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Professor John Satterly 
Department of Physics 
University of Toronto 



From Photo by] 


Begone . . . 

3Bs tbe 

IRev. 1bil&eric 





T T is a matter of satisfaction for me to be 
-* able to include in my u Bygone Series " a 
volume from the painstaking pen of the Rev. 
Hilderic Friend. He has spent many years in 
studying the history of Devonshire. Mr. Friend 
is familiar with the historic highways and byways 
of the country, and I venture to think his latest, 
work will find favour with lovers of local lore. 



March /M, 1898. 





SOME RUINED CASTLES - - - - .... 42 











BYGONE WORTHIES ^ . >: . 2 i6 

A PEEP AT KENT'S CAVERN ....... 231 


INDEX 251 


place IRames, IRbipmes, anb IReasons, 

""HERE is a peculiar fascination about the 
study of place-names. This fascination, 
moreover, exists for, and throws its spell over the 
popular mind, quite as certainly as it does over 
that of the antiquary. Hence the many attempts 
to explain a striking name. To this we owe some 
of our most curious legends, and here we are able 
to trace the workings of the imagination in days 
more romantic than our own. A man hears a 
new name for the first time, and naturally asks 
What does it mean ? It is always humiliating to 
have to confess ignorance, and equally gratifying 
to pose as an authority. We therefore cast about 
us for a clue. A town stands near the line and is 
known as Haltwhistle. Surely the reason is 

patent. Here the train must halt and whistle lest 



anyone in crossing be cut to pieces ! It matters 
not that the name existed ages before the first train 
passed that way ; things fit, and what is fitting 
and seemly should not be too harshly criticized. 

A heavy charge must be laid upon the scholars 
and antiquaries, who, during the last quarter of a 
century, have done so much to drive the poetry 
out of our Devonshire place-names, by bringing 
them to the touch-stone of linguistic facts and 
laws, by denying to us the right to call in the 
Druids and fairies, the old Teutonic gods, and the 
heroes of chivalry to account for the rhythmic and 
poetic names with which our tors, streams, vales 
and villages abound. We loved to think that the 
wise men of old gathered in solemn conclave 
under the oaks of the Wistman's Wood, and if 
wist and wise differ by a letter that is a small 
matter where consonants are of little moment and 
vowels count for nothing. Surely, too, we might 
be allowed to believe that Drewsteignton derived 
its name from the Druids of yore ; that Honey- 
ditches was so called because the busy bee found 
nectar in the sunny south, and the place flowed 
with milk and honey ; and that Heavitree was so 
designated because here the gallows, or the 'heavy- 
tree/ was so frequently erected for execution. 


But science is a cruel and heartless thing. It 
has no bowels of compassion for our pets. It 
lifts up the knife against our most cherished 
darlings, and when these have thoroughly gripped 
our sentiment and emotion the fatal blow is 
struck. Law, it says, must be enforced. Poetry 
must yield to history, fancy to fact, imagination to 
realism, popular etymology to scientific definition. 

Under these stern necessities it may be well if 
we cull, from the folk-speech and legendary lore 
of Devonshire, a few gleanings relating to the 
names of places, together with some rhymes and 
traditions bearing thereon. We shall learn, in so 
doing something of the love of home which is 
inherent in the peasant breast, with the disgust 
which is felt at the upstart claims of others. We 
shall see how the primitive mind operates in 
presence of problems which lack of correct 
information makes it difficult to solve, while we 
shall have pleasing illustrations of poetic fancy and 
old-time tradition. Envy, it would seem, has 
always dwelt in the human breast. 


We shall see in a later chapter that Crediton 
was the seat of a bishop before Exeter claimed the 


honour, and there is a curious place-rhyme relating 
to these two towns which shows the kind of 
feeling which the former entertained towards her 
successful rival. We are told 

" Kirdon was a market town 
When Ex'ter was a vuzzy down." 

We fear the matter-of-fact historian will not 
endorse the statement, and we can scarcely acquit 
the rhymster. Some one, at any rate, has been 
guilty of plagiarism, for we learn that 

" Plympton was a borough town 
When Plymouth was a fuzzy down." 

There is, however, in the latter instance, as Mr. 
Worth has pointed out, some show of reason 
seeing that Plympton, under the name Plintona, 
was, when ' Domesday ' was compiled, the chief 
centre of population for many miles round. 

Totnes again is famous in poetry, albeit the 
rhymster was no perfect master of the art. When 
Brutus landed here he burst forth 

11 Here I stand, and here I rest, 
And this place shall be called Totnes." 

Now it is easy (for those who are not over 
scrupulous in the matter of derivation) to see that 
Totnes means something like " Stand at Ease," 



for it is the French (but not of Parys as Chaucer 
would remind us) Tout a I'aise ! Surely a pretty 
conceit, which ought not to be so rudely handled 
as it is by the scornful linguist of to-day. 

Some of these rhymes should be enough to 
make the money-lover of to-day anxious to sell all 
that he hath and buy the estates to which they 
refer, in order that he may acquire the wealth 
which they contain. Here again we come across 
the plagiarist. One has said that 

" If Cadbury Castle and Dolbury Hill dolven were, 
Then Devon might plough with a golden coulter, 
And eare with a gilded shere." 

Dolven is the participle of to delve, and too many 
are ready to say " I cannot dig," for 

" When Adam delve and Eve span, 
Who was then the gentleman ?" 

Our rhyme is sometimes modified and runs 
as follows 

" If Cadbury and Dolbury dolven were 
All England might plough with a golden share." 

When I resided at Newton Abbot a similar 
distich was applied by the people to the neigh- 
bouring hill, which was supposed to be the burial 
place of a Danish King. 



" If Denbury Down a level were, 
All England might plough with golden share." 

It is strange that, with such wealth at hand, no one 
should have the necessary enterprise to level the 
Downs. Perhaps the people lack faith in their 
own effusions. Or is it that they fear the fiery 
dragon which maintains a never-ceasing vigil over 
the treasures which these ancient earthworks 
contain ? 

Devonshire, like other counties, has its Cold 
Harbour, a name which is frequently associated 
with old Roman Roads. Concerning this place it 
is said 

" The devil's dead 
And buried in Cold Harbour." 

Hatherleigh stands in a district which is noted as 
being one of the worst cultivated and least pro- 
ductive in the whole of the county. This unenvi- 
able notoriety has given rise to the couplet 

" The people are poor 
As Hatherleigh moor." 

Wollacombe Tracy, in the neighbourhood of 
Morthoe a name which is naturally associated 
with tragedy is named after a family of whom it 
is said 


"... The Tracys 
Had always the wind in their faces." 


Some place-names lend themselves to popular 
explanations, and seem to court attention by 
their very suggestiveness. Who, for example, 
could hesitate as to the meaning of the Spinster's 
Rock ? Evidently some old maid has had some- 
thing to do with it. One writer tells us it is so 
named because, like a spinster, it stands alone, 
thus conveying the idea of desolation and 
barrenness, of solitude and individuality. Another 
sees in it an allusion to a spinner, the spinster 
being so called because it fell to her lot in the 
long ago to spin the family yarns. Hence the fame 
woman has acquired in the matter of yarn-spinning. 
Another, however, will have it that the rock was 
erected by three spinsters one morning before 
breakfast. It is, of course, very natural for the 
student of folk-lore to trace here a relic of the old 
Norse mythology. The three spinsters are the 
three Weird Sisters cropping up again. We have 
met with them in Macbeth, but with Chaucer 
they are the fatal Sustrin. They allot to every 
man his term of life, and as they also bestow 
wisdom, they are the wise women. When a child 


is born they approach and pronounce his doom. 
They enter the castle as well as the cot, and at 
night spin the threads of fate, and stretch the 
golden cord in the midst of heaven. They do so 
many powerful things that it would be a very easy 
matter for them to fix up a tor. 

The curious pile of rocks, which is pointed out 
to the tourist near Manaton, bears the name of 
Bowerman's Nose. One naturally expects so 
suggestive a name to have a legend attached to it. 
Bowerman is therefore a whilom worthy who 
owned the estate in the olden time, and was 
remarkable for his facial peculiarities. The 
rocks resemble the nose of the man, and are 
therefore named after that person. Alas ! your 
unimaginative antiquary comes and cuts the ground 
from under you. He has been through Domesday, 
but can find no landowner named Bowerman ; 
and, moreover, he has turned up his Celtic word- 
list and found that man means ' a stone,' and 
Bower is a corruption of maur which means 'great! 
The name Manaton itself is on the same principle 
shewn to have a purely rocky, and not a human 

In the days when the Druids were in special 
favour among historians and linguists nearly 


every name which began with Tu or Drew was 
referred to them or the gods of Scandinavia. 
What one could not explain the other could. 
Thus Drewsteignton was easily shown to be the 
town on the Teign founded, inhabited, or owned 
by the Druids. Dewerstone, a romantic spot, of 
which the Devonshire poet Carrington was 
specially fond, clearly owes its name, according 
to these etymologists, to Tieu or Tuisco, the god 
after whom Tuesday has been named. These 
pretty fancies cannot now be entertained. One 
Drogo or Drewe, unknown to the student of 
myths and ancient religions a man probably 
who ' came over with the Conqueror,' and snapped 
up the tit-bits which were then so plentiful, has 
ousted the priests and deities. Honiton naturally 
falls into two parts. The final syllable * ton ' is 
clear enough, and ' Honi' remains. Honi soil 
qui malypense. Honi means shame, and Honiton 
is therefore the town of shame. We are not told 
how the shame came about, but the seal of the 
Corporation is an antiquarian puzzle. Two 
figures, apparently male and female, have above 
them a hand, with fingers extended, as in the act of 
blessing, and beneath them a spray of honeysuckle 
blossom. An old writer says the male figure 


represents an idol, before whom the female 
presents herself in prayer for the gift of a child. 
The legend avers that, just as in the East to-day, 
so formerly at Honiton, the would-be mother was 
directed to spend a day and a night in prayer in 
St. Margaret's Chapel, whereupon her desire 
would be gratified. 

The name Moretonhampstead, usually contracted 
to Moreton, is well adapted for popular treatment. 
The town was once a considerable centre for the 
manufacture of serge. 

This industry was in all probability more or less 
under the direction of Flemish operatives or other 
foreign workmen ; and as according to popular 
tradition they worked in or belonged to three 
sections, one had its home on the moor, another 
its stead, and the third its town, hence the Moor- 
town-ham-stead ! Domesday, however, again sends 
out its protest, and tells us that it was a royal 
manor belonging to Harold, centuries before the 
Fleming era. 

On Dartmoor we find a number of Tors, many 
of which have very fanciful names, the very origin 
of which is in numerous instances absolutely lost. 
Some of these names seem to be clearly borrowed 
from natural or artificial objects as a sheep, a bell, 


or a cow. One of these curious rocks is dis- 
tinguished by the name of Belle-tor. The spelling 
is frequently phonetic merely, there being no clue 
to the meaning. In this instance the sound 
suggests many different ideas. It may be that of 
a bell from the shape of the rock ; a belle, because 
it stands forth like a graceful damsel ; or Bel an 
ancient deity, on account of the supposed former 
worship of Baal on this dreary moor. Then we 
have Bair-Down, which may suggest the thought 
of bareness. As this part of the district, however, 
is not now as bare as some others, we must try 
again. Tradition therefore relieves us by 
affirming that this is the spot where the last Dart- 
moor bear was despatched. The patron of 
Druidism now comes forward and claims the down 
for the bard. Thus we read that " Dun, now 
altered to down, means a hill. We may naturally 
imagine, therefore, that it was originally called 
Baird, or Bard-dun, Bardorum mons, ' the hill of 
bards." And the etymology of the word bard will 
confirm this opinion." 

How tempting, again, is such a name as Mer- 
rivale and Merripit. What scenes of revelry and 
delight are suggested thereby. In the sequestered 
valley and the forsaken pit the fairies held their 


midnight revels, the good folk danced and 
frolicked, the elves rejoiced and made merry. 
Presently, however, it was discovered that the 
word merry was only another way of saying or 
writing miry, and the pit and vale instantly lost 
the mirth and laughter and were transformed into 
the common-place and matter-of-fact Miry-vale 
and Miry-pit ! 

But I must pursue this interesting branch of 
our subject no further. I wish now to indicate 
some of the 


of the etymologist Of the numerous dangers 
into which the student of Devonshire place-names 
may fall, two only can be here indicated. The 
first arises from a wish to apply to the names of 
places a pet theory about old-time inhabitants, 
invasions, religions, and the like. One man has a 
craze for Druidism, another for Celticism, and a 
third for Scandinavianism. This man is searching 
for traces of Caesar and the Romans ; a second is 
at the heels of the Phoenicians or the Danes, and 
another wants to connect the Welsh with the 
county. Men bent on discoveries soon develope 
a wonderful facility for making them, and by a 


little ingenuity can turn almost any name they 
come across to good account. Another class of 
students approach the subject rather from the 
standpoint of tribal occupation, and are always 
in search of words which can be connected with 
personal and family names. We have need to be 
constantly on guard against the philologist with 
a craze. 

The second danger is of another kind. The 
investigator is actuated by the idea that the 
explanation which is most readily suggested by 
the happiest form of the word is the one which 
must be accepted. In Oxfordshire we find a 
village called Heyford. A writer having seen the 
name somewhere written Hay ford wrote to say it 
was evidently the Ford for Hay ! It would be 
easy for such an expert to shew that the ford was 
used for hay only, because at other seasons of the 
year there would be too much water in the stream 
to allow of corn, felled timber or other commodities 
to be carried over ! So in Devon we find a 
romantic pile of rocks known as Heytor. On this 
principle it is enough to say that the farmers used 
to carry their hay to the breezy height that it 
might dry more quickly than in the valley ; or 
that it was customary formerly to cut the grass on 


the top of the tor and make it into hay. Now 
under this heading we have to remember several 
facts. Formerly names were rarely committed to 
writing. When they were eventually written 
each scribe chose his own method of spelling, and 
each different form might suggest a different 
etymology. Names were often modified in speech 
and writing to make them fit in with a theory 
prevalent at one time or another as to the meaning 
of the name. Many illustrations might be ad- 
duced, but I will select the name Oakhampton as 
a type. I am not aware that the Druid-cult comes 
in here, except it be in connection with the oak. 
The name Druid is popularly derived from one of 
the names for the oak, and as famous oaks were 
the resorts of the priests as well as prominent 
landmarks, the town of Oakhampton might easily 
be regarded as a seat of Druidism. The second 
class of students, however, say at once here we 
have the Home-town by the Oak. Ham and ton 
denote two distinct batches of settlers. The first 
had their ham or home by the Oak, and so called 
it Oakham, a name we meet with elsewhere. 
When the second group of settlers arrived they 
called the place their ton or town, and so there 
naturally up-grew the completed designation Oak- 


ham-ton. Believing this to be the meaning, 
scribes have in the course of time evolved the 
present form of this name from an older Okehamp- 
ton, where the syllable Oke as written suggests 
something different from the Oak as pronounced. 
If we go to the town itself we find the people 
speaking of it as Ockington. Our Oak now 
disappears, and our ham as well, but a new 
suggestion arises. The middle syllable is a tribal 
ending or patronymic. Ockington is clearly the 
town or residence of the Ocking tribe, so the man 
who is studying the distribution of clans and 
families claims this name for the support of his 
theory. And now Domesday, and the heartless 
destroyer of pet theories, comes along, and with 
one rude blow crushes all our pretty but foundation- 
less creations by telling us that Oakhampton 
should be written Okehampton, and that Ockington 
and Oakhampton alike are traceable to an earlier 
form Ochementone, or Ockmenton, i.e. the town 
on the river Ockment. And this is clearly a 
decisive conclusion. 

To safeguard ourselves, therefore, it is necessary 
in the first place to try and ascertain the earliest 
form of the name on record. We must bring all 
we can of history and fact to bear on the question, 


and we must not be narrow in our researches. I 
have found much light on the names in Devonshire 
by studying the similar names in Cumberland. 
Celtic districts should be compared with Celtic, 
Danish with Danish, Saxon with Saxon, and 
Roman with Roman. The names of rivers, moun- 
tains, valleys, crags, shorelands, and lowlands in 
one district or county, should be compared and con- 
trasted with those found under similiar circum- 
stances elsewhere. In this way waves of popul- 
ation can be traced, and frequently a phonetic 
modification in one locality will instantly elucidate 
a puzzling name in another. One other task now 
remains, namely, that of 


Guessing at etymology is not now permissible. 
Legendary and traditional explanations, while 
serving a useful purpose, must not be accepted as 
bond fide derivations. We must go to the root of 
the, matter. Devonshire will afford the careful 
student of early names a splendid field of research. 
The mountains, rivers, and prominent natural 
features will first claim attention, then he may 
descend to cities, towns, and villages. Next there 
are manors and farms, roads and fields, trees or 


stones, and minor objects of interest, each and all 
of which will be found to have some story to tell, 
or some hint to supply. To begin with the rivers. 
We find here, as in many other parts of the 
country, distinct traces of Celticism. Each of the 
larger rivers of Devonshire bears a Celtic name. 
Take, for example, the three words for water, dwr, 
uisg, and tay, with their various modifications, and 
from the first .we get the Dart, sometimes called 
also the Darent, corresponding with the Derwent, 
as well as with the Adder, Dour, and Darwin. 
From the second we obtain the Exe, on which are 
seated Exeter and Exmouth, the Ockment and 
Okehampton, and the Axe, with Axminster and 
Axmouth. With these correspond the Esk, Ash, 
Usk, Ux, and Ouse, to mention no others. From 
the third, which yields elsewhere the Thame and 
the Thames, the Tame and the Teme, we derive 
the Devonshire Tavy and Taw, Torridge, Teign 
and Tamar. 

The hills of Devonshire have none of the striking 
magnificence which characterizes the mountains of 
Lakeland. Consequently, while the latter retain 
their ancient British or Celtic names, we seldom 
meet with relics of the Celtic language among the 
Devonshire hills. Some of the Tors and crags in 


all probability are still known by the names applied 
to them by these old-time inhabitants, but in too 
many instances we can only guess at the matter, 
and that we have shewn to be unscientific. It is 
interesting to find a Walla Crag, however, alike 
in Devonshire and in Cumberland, and other 
similarities will be pointed out in another 
connection. We have already seen that Manaton 
and Bowerman's Nose have a place here. So 
have the various Pens, as Pen Shiel and Pen 
Beacon ; Henbury and Hennock seem to be 
associated with the Celtic word hen, meaning ' old,' 
or 'ancient,' and the word for a wood (coed) may 
be found in the final syllable of Dunnagoat. 
Near Martlock in Somerset we find a hamlet 
named Coat to which the same origin is assigned ; 
but the Goat of Cockermouth, and Goit or Gowt 
of Lincoln and elsewhere, have reference, not to a 
wood but a mill-race. If we cannot give Wist- 
man's Wood over to the Druids or Wise-men we 
may find a plausible derivation, as Mr. Worth has 
already pointed out, in uisg (water) maen (stone) 
coed (wood), 'the damp wood among the tors;' 
and one has only to read Mrs. Bray's description 
of the place to realize the appositeness of the 


Such names as Kelly, Killeton, and Killatree, 
while full of suggestion for the romancer, will at 
once remind the traveller of Ireland. Here the 
whilom groves and woods were known by the 
name of Kell or Kill (the Celtic Celli, a grove, 
then perhaps a cell or place of retreat), as in the 
famous Killarney or the cathedral town of Kildare. 
Knock is another well-known Irish word, and 
may in all probably be found in Knackersknowle 
near Plymouth, where Knowle (a hill) and Knack 
mean the same thing. Everyone who is interested 
in the folk-lore of place-names has heard of Penny- 
come-quick, and we cannot help regretting that 
the scientific study of nomenclature has reduced 
this romantic name to the commonplace pen-y- 
cwm-cnick, or head of the creek valley, and at the 
same time crushed out the life of a pretty legend. 
As in Scotland and Cumberland, where Celtic 
place-names occur, so in Devonshire, we meet 
with such forms as Combray or Commery, and 
the like ; and there can be no doubt about the 
origin and meaning being identical, even though 
the spelling or pronunciation vary to some extent. 

Passing now to the Saxon element in Devonshire 
place-names, we find that the lesser streams of the 
county are clearly indebted to that language for 


their designations. From the word Ea, water, 
we get the Yeo ; but this was formerly the Ashburn. 
Here we have probably the Celtic Uisg, which we 
have already found in the Exe and Axe, combined 
with the later burn. The former name is still 
retained in Ashburton. Popular etymology how- 
ever, entirely ignoring history and fact, would 
refer this name to the Barton by the Ash tree, 
and so make it mean Ash-farm ; or to the town on 
the burn which flows among the ash trees. The 
Lyn has received its name from hlynn, 'a stream,' 
and gives us Lynton ; just as Lyd from hlyd, 
'loud' supplies us with Lydford. From the 
Saxons also we get our becks (as in the charming 
Becky Falls), burns, and brooks. The names of 
parishes and towns are chiefly of Saxon origin. 
We find a large number of place-names ending in 
ton or tun, don or dun, and if some of these are 
traceable to downs and dunes, the bulk of them 
indicate an enclosure or town (in the early sense 
of the word). Town, in its earlier form ton, 
was from the A.S. tfin, corresponding to the 
Dutch tuin, German zaun, and Icelandic tfin, an 
enclosure, a place surrounded by a fence or hedge, 
a homestead, farm or town. There are also 
numerous hams, stowes, burys, and worthys ; on 


the meanings of which it is needless to dwell. 
Stead, so frequent in many other places, is found 
once only in this county, namely in Moreton- 
hampstead. In this instance I cannot think we 
have a case of triplication. Hampstead is one 
word. We find Stowe both alone, and as the 
first or last portion of a compound. Bury (or 
Berry) is used in the same way, but while the 
former means simply a place, the latter includes 
the idea of protection or fortification, and is often 
associated with evidences of military occupation. 

The occurrence of the syllable ing in the middle 
of many names, especially those which end in ton, 
has given rise to a great amount of controversy. 
One school maintains that such names as Arlington, 
Dartington, and Holington indicate that the 
Arlings, Dartings, and Holings settled here. No 
doubt in many parts of the country we may so 
conqlude, and it would scarcely be true to affirm 
that Devonshire is an entire exception. We have 
seen, however, that the local Ockington may more 
reasonably be regarded as the town by the river 
Ockment, than the abode of the Ockings of whom 
we know nothing. So Dartington may properly 
be referred, through its old spelling Darenturn to 
the river Darent or Dart, rather than to the 


mythical Dartings. Besides which we often meet 
with the patronymic form without the final ton. 
Thus one might claim Shillingford to be the 
ford of the Shillings, another would refer the name 
to a time when a shilling had to be paid for the 
privilege of crossing, while a third, with something 
more of science in his attempt at a derivation, 
might refer it to a word Shealing, meaning a 
shelter, a temporary abode, with the idea the 
ford by the shed. Ing, again, is the Saxon for a 
meadow. In Yorkshire we find, even in the 
heart of Bradford, the Hall Ings, or the meadows 
belonging to the Hall ; and in Devonshire place- 
names the same word recurrs. 

Evidence is sometimes negative. We have 
instances here. The Danish by, so frequent 
elsewhere, is absent from Devonshire, unless it be 
found in Huckaby ; and of the Scandinavian 
thwaite I cannot recall a single example. Equally 
conspicuous by its absence is the Saxon Hurst, a 
wood. That Devonshire formerly had its woods 
or Hursts, and its wood-clearings or Thwaites, is 
certain, but Dane and Saxon were not then to the 
fore. The woods remain in name either as wood ; 
e.g., Cornwood, Woodleigh and Marwood ; as 
holt, in Chittlehamholt, and perhaps in the quaint 


mongrel name by which Exeter was once known 
as Penholtkeyre ; or as spinney or shaw, as in 
Shobrooke, Chagford, and Sampford Spiney. 

I must not omit to notice the influence which 
the church and monastic institutions have exerted 
on our old place-names in Devonshire. The 
sanctuary as a temple is recalled by Templeton, 
just as in Cumberland we find Temple Sowerby, 
and in Ireland Templemore. Monkleigh and 
Monkton, Axminster and Exminster, Dean Prior 
and Shaugh Prior, Abbot's Kerswell and Newton 
Abbot, Bishop's Tawton and Bishop's Teignton, 
with many others, speak for themselves. 

In conclusion we gather that the Roman, except 
in Exeter (or Exan-ceastre, the fort on the Exe) 
has had but little influence, and left but feeble 
marks upon the nomenclature. The Dane has 
scarcely been more successful. The priest and 
monk have accomplished much, the Saxon and 
the Celt the most. The latter named the larger 
rivers, with some woods and hills, some vales and 
tors, while the Saxon named the homesteads and 
villages, laid the parish bounds, and made the 
needful enclosures. 

Cleanings among (Tburcb antiquities. 

THE remarks with which the foregoing chapter 
drew to a close naturally suggest some en- 
quiry into matters relating to the Church. I shall, 
therefore, endeavour in the following pages to put 
into new form the results of my researches among 
the older churches of Devonshire. Unfortunately 
the present century has been one of almost 
more deplorable iconoclasm than that in which the 
Puritans wrought such cruel havoc among our 
national edifices. In this later age, however, it 
has been the utilitarian spirit, and not the anti- 
ritual one, which has resulted in such irreparable 
loss. Formerly there was associated with the 
parish of Dawlish, an ancient relic of church 
architecture of priceless value. It consisted 
of a round tower, almost identical with those 
which still exist in considerable Cumbers in Ire- 
land, and of which we yet possess two or three 
examples in Scotland. Now it is no more. 

In Devonshire, as elsewhere in England, ecclesi- 
astical architecture, so far as we are able to study 


it to day, practically begins with the Conquest. 
In a general way it may be affirmed that nothing 
of a definitely historical character remains to the 
church antiquary earlier than the eleventh century. 
What few relics we have belonging to Roman, 
Dane, or Celt, will find their place elsewhere. And 
even with reference to the purely Norman remains 
Devonshire is poor when compared with many 
other English counties. A few fonts here and 
there, a doorway arch, moulding, pillar or tower, 
with occasionally a church whose character as a 
whole is more or less Norman, covers the ground. 
In some things, particularly in the matter of screens, 
Devonshire is fairly rich. But let us give some 
of the facts first, and draw conclusions afterwards. 
I will begin by indicating the position of s.ome 


If we alight at the pretty, historic town of Ax- 
minster, and wend our way to the parish church, 
we shall there find a Norman porch and doorway 
at the east end of the south aisle. This 
position, unusual in ordinary parish churches, 
where the main entrance is usually west, or south- 
west, is accounted for by the fact that the building 
was originally founded as a minster. In its 


original condition it was a splendid fabric, and it 
is well known that where churches were connected 
with monastic institutions, one of the entrances, 
leading to and from the cloister court and chapter 
house, was at the south east. From Axminster 
we may take a run to Axmouth, where again we 
shall find a Norman doorway, with a moulded arch. 
The church to-day, however, has none of that glory, 
which attached to it when Leland could describe 
the place as the " olde and bigge fischar towne." 
At Sidmouth remains of Norman work may be 
traced in the walls of the Church, which is dedi- 
cated to St. Nicholas. The west tower dates from 
the fifteenth century, and was retained when the 
structure underwent the process of restoration in 
1859. The dedication took place just six hundred 
years before the date of reconstruction. 

The church of St. Michael at Teignmouth, sad 
scene of sacrilege, and ruthless violence in 1690, 
still retains its Norman south door, while a fine door 
way of the same period still exists also at Paignton a 
place in the immediate neighbourhood of Torquay, 
which was formerly traditionally associated with the 
famous Miles Coverdale, and is now a rapidly grow- 
ing pleasure resort. The main part of the church 
itself is in the Perpendicular style, and is dedicated 


to St. John. The church of Sts. Mary and Peter 
at Salcombe possesses a Norman tower, together 
with an Early English chancel. Berry Narbor 
church likewise has an Early English chancel 
with a Norman arch. Its composition exhibits 
also a Perpendicular nave, and a Decorated 
picturesque tower, so that a stately, and varied 
building is the result. Within are monuments 
of the families which were formerly so 
prominently associated with the adjoining 
manor-house, of which more hereafter. Several 
churches have Norman fonts, and of these a list 
will be supplied in another section. There is a 
Norman chapel adjoining Bickleigh Court now 
a farm-house, but for a long time the residence of 
the Carews. Most notable among these perhaps 
was the eccentric King of the beggars, Bamfylde 
Moore Carew, son of the Rev. Theodore Carew, 
who, during the seventeeth century was rector 
here. The low Norman tower of Belston Church 
is said to be the work of Baldwin de Brionne, 
Earl of Devon. Some traces of a Norman structure 
may also be discovered in the parish church at 
Meavy. Near the bridge may be seen a granite 
cross nine feet in height, while the Meavy oak, 
which is thought to have been a vigorous tree in 


the days of King John will also be an interesting 
subject for inspection. 

Turning our steps towards Creditor., a town 
which ranks second only to Exeter in interest for 
the church antiquary, we find that though the 
church is mainly Perpendicular, it embodies the 
Norman portion of a tower which pertained to the 
original edifice. Of the church itself it does not 
concern me to speak in the present chapter. And 
though we now pass on to Exeter, I shall make 
no allusion to the Cathedral, as that inviting 
sanctuary will claim a fuller notice by and bye. 
In the city we find a few scattered relics of Norman 
times. Thus, the crypt of the Priory, dedicated 
to St. Nicholas in the Mint Lane, has been 
retained and transformed into a kitchen. In 1826, 
when some work was being done about St. Step- 
hen's, two stone columns of the ancient Norman 
crypt were discovered ; some would assign them 
to the Saxon period, but this seems to us unlikely. 
Some distinctly Norman features are still retained 
in the Church of St. Mary Arches, to the north of 
Fore Street, where some pillars and arches of that 
period may be seen. The Norman Church of St. 
Mary Major was replaced by a modern erection 
in 1866. The sanctuary was of special interest 


from its having been, since the days of the Con- 
fessor, the place for holding the Court of the 
Archdeacon of Exeter. St. Pancras, which was 
restored some years ago under the supervision of 
Mr. J. Pearson, A.R.A., is one of the oldest churches 
in Exeter, some portions of the fabric having been 
regarded as pre-Norman in character. St. Olave's 
Church, also, claims our attention in this con- 
nexion. Its history is full of interest, but we are 
at present specially concerned with the fact that 
the ancient foundation dates back to an age prior 
to the conquest, since William I. granted it to 
Battle Abbey, in Sussex, a religious house which 
the Conqueror erected on the spot where Harold fell. 
It seems strange that a church in Devon should 
be given to a monastery in Sussex, but such things 
were not unusual, and tradition, if not history, here 
supplies us with a reason. St. Olave's is said to 
have been built originally in the reign of Canute, 
by Githa, the mother of Harold, and in that case 
the gift was thoughtful and seemly. Having thus 
taken a casual survey of the city churches, for the 
sake of their Norman remains alone, we may now 
complete our tour of the county. 

At Branscombe, now a quiet village, but for- 
merly not lacking importance, we shall find a 


church which still retains in part its Norman 
character. Here after the Branscombes ceased to 
hold the Manor, the Wadhams came into posses- 
sion, and from the last owners of the estate by 
that name we date the foundation of Wadham 
College, Oxford. The church at Sidbury, too, 
was originally Norman, but has been re-built. 
Dedicated to St. Giles, it now shews traces of the 
earlier work, combined with Early. English and 
Perpendicular masonry. This church has been 
rendered note-worthy also by the puzzling inscrip- 
tion in the chancel, which perpetuates the memory 
of Henry Parson, who died " in the second-first 
climacteric year of his age." Of the church of 
Tiverton I shall have to speak in another con- 
nection. There is a Norman arch at Clovelly. 


Some of the churches which we have already 
visited contain fonts which will attract the 
attention of the antiquary, while others will be 
found associated with buildings which are of later 
date than the Norman period. To begin this 
time within the Cathedral City itself, we may first 
of all inspect the font in which royalty has been 
baptised. The romantic story of Henrietta, wife 


of Charles I., the accouchment at Exeter during a 
time of siege, and her flight by way of Falmouth 
to Brest in 1644, has been often and variously 
told. It was in Exeter that Henrietta Anne, 
afterwards the lovely Duchess of Orleans, was 
born. The occasion augured ill, and the after- 
story bears out the fateful prognostications. She 
was left by her mother in charge of Lady Moreton 
and Sir John Berkeley, and the Cathedral still 
retains the font in which the royal, but ill-fated 
child, was baptised while in their care. Among 
other noteworthy fonts contained in the city, that 
of St. Mary Steps demands attention. That in 
St. Paul's Church is also unusual, being made of 
black marble. 

Taking a run to Torquay, we find ourselves, in 
due course, inspecting the mother-church at Torre 
Mohun, a fine old building in the Perpendicular 
style, and containing an octagonal font which 
dates from the same period. Here also is an 
effigy in full armour, which commemorates 
Ridgway, the father of the first Earl of London- 
derry. The church at Slapton, built in the Early 
English style, dedicated to St. Mary, and possess- 
ing a screen which has been richly wrought, also 
has a font which should be examined. St. 


Lawrence, Bigbury, contains another which is of 
early date, as well as an old pulpit which formerly 
belonged to Ashburton. The presence of a 
circular Norman font of plain character at Bideford, 
suggests that the church of St. Mary, which dates 
from the fourteenth century, must have been 
erected on an earlier Norman or Saxon foundation. 
It is in this way that a relic will sometimes supply 
a clue to the earlier history of the edifice which 
contains it. Thus the church at Ilfracombe, as at 
present seen, appears to belong to the fifteenth 
century, we find in it, however, a Norman font 
which has been in the hands of the restorer, and 
clear evidences that the building itself dates from 
the twelfth century. It is dedicated to the Holy 
Trinity, and consists of the usual nave, chancel, 
, and north and south aisles. One would judge 
from the style of the old circular font at Axe- 
minster, as well as from the date of the dedication, 
and the existence of an original Norman doorway, 
that we have here a parallel case to the one at 
Great Malvern. In the latter instance, the 
heavy circular font is exactly in the style of the 
massive Norman columns of the nave. 

Brampford Speke the mention of which re- 
calls the name of Captain Speke, the associate 


of Grant in the work of African exploration has 
a curious hexagonal font, a shape which was not 
unusual in connection with the Perpendicular 
style of architecture, just as the octagonal panelled 
form was largely associated with the Decorated 
period. The font at Plymtree is ancient, that of 
South Molton is likewise of early date, and is 
associated with a pulpit of stone which is heavily 
charged with ornamental carvings. The font in 
the church of Stoke St. Nectan is curious. It 
represents in its decorations the just looking down 
upon the unjust. We may also mention Hols- 
worthy font for its ancient character in a church 
of the Perpendicular style. Connected with many 
of these, there is an amount of interesting folk- 
lore which one is strongly tempted to record. To 
do so here, however, would be to unduly lengthen 
the chapter, and, at the same time, make it 
impossible for us to do justice to a subject of 
unusual interest. 

While the foregoing list does not pretend to be 
exhaustive, it is fairly representative, and shews 
us that in this respect, as in some others, Devon is 
not by any means so rich in ecclesiastical heirlooms 
as many of the English counties are. We do not 
remember to have seen one of her fonts engraved. 



This is not the place to recite the interesting 
story of the evolution of a pulpit. A word may 
be said on the subject in a later chapter ; here it 
must suffice to observe that this piece of church 
furniture seldom dates back to pre- Reformation 
times with us. Jacobean pulpits are tolerably 
frequent up and down the country, and sundry 
parish churches in Devonshire still boast the 
possession of specimens, which are noteworthy on 
account of their age, carving, material, or 
associations. The handsome memorial pulpit in 
Exeter Cathedral does not here concern us, as it 
is of modern date. There is a pulpit in the church 
of the Holy Trinity at Ilfracombe which belongs 
to the time of James I. The finely-carved oaken 
pulpit which is still preserved in the old minster 
church at Axminster, is worthy a careful inspection. 
It belongs to the year 1633, and is associated 
with an arched piscina, three sedilia, and an old 
font all which are of peculiar interest to the 
antiquary. The ornamental stone pulpit of South 
Molton has been mentioned already, and the 
neighbouring parish of North Molton may be 
visited for the purpose of seeing the fine stone 


pulpit and carved screen which are to be found 
there. At Pilton Church we find, not only an 
old-time pulpit, but what is very rare in Devon- 
shire, the iron stand to which was formerly 
attached the hour-glass by which the length of 
the preacher's discourse might be measured. 

A visit to the attractive church of Stoke St. 
Nectan, formerly attached to Hartland Abbey, 
and still possessed of great merit from the archi- 
tectural as well as the antiquarian standpoint, will 
be amply repaid. Here, in addition to the curious 
font, and the numerous memorials, the screen in 
perfect condition, and the ancient stone altar, is a- 
pulpit of the time of James, carved in black oak 
with a canopy, the figure of an animal, said to 
represent a tusked goat, and the legend GOD SAVE 
KING JAMES, FINIS. It has been suggested that 
Finis was the carver's name, and the goat his 
escutcheon. On this point, however, I will pro- 
nounce no opinion. In St. James' Church, 
Exeter, is a pulpit of Spanish workmanship. It 
is said to have been found in a Spanish galleon, 
and was formerly in the Cathedral. The church 
itself is new, but as there was a church in Exeter 
dedicated to St. James in the thirteenth century, 
we may assume that this is a reminiscence of the 


same. Previous to the year 1222, when the 
ordinance list of nineteen parish churches was 
compiled, we find the names of certain chapels 
which were scattered over the city, including, 
among others, those of St. Bartholomew, St. 
Clement, St. Cuthbert, St. Edward, and St. 
James. The ancient parish church at Dartmouth 
contains a good pulpit of stone, and a curiously- 
painted screen, while the old stone pulpit at 
Totnes is sculptured with the devices of the 
Twelve Tribes of Israel. 


The screens of Devonshire are among its most 
noteworthy and precious ecclesiastical relics. 
The fact that so many have survived is sig- 
nificant. Whether we visit the stately cathedral 
or the modest parish church, we shall continually 
be coming across some choice example in wood or 
stone, curiously carved or rudely painted, entire 
or somewhat maltreated, in its original state or 
"restored," either for better or worse, but in each 
and every case with something that is instructive 
and valuable. That which still adorns the first 
church of the city of Exeter, of which more anon, 
is of singular beauty and interest. Also, within 


the city, we may observe the noticeable fifteenth 
century screen which was brought from St. Mary 
Major, and set up in St. Mary Steps, and the 
oaken screen in the church of St. Lawrence, 
High Street, with an altar-piece by Bacon. This 
church, which originally belonged to the Abbot 
and Convent of St. Mary de Valle in Normandy, 
was bought by the parishioners in 1658, when the 
number of churches was compulsorily reduced, for 
;ioo, and has, needless to say, passed through 
the hands of the restorer. The church at 
Coleridge is enriched by a beautiful Perpen- 
dicular screen, together with an effigy in armour 
of John Evans, dating from 1514. Evans is 
assumed to be the donor of the screen, in which 
case it probably belongs to the close of the 
fifteenth century. Here we also find a stained 
glass figure of Edward V., the more noteworthy 
because old glass is rare in this county. 

There is a rood-screen in the church at 
Chumleigh, a church which was at one time 
collegiate, with seven prebends distinct from the 
rectory. Such curiosities in church organization 
are by no means rare, and are full of historical 
significance. Here history and legend, as usual, 
divide the honours between them. The neigh- 


bouring church of Atherington possesses a 
remarkable screen of very fine workmanship, 
together with some good stained glass and 
some fifteenth-century effigies. A splendid screen 
separates the chancel from the nave in the curious 
old parish church of Kenton, a short distance 
from the romantic Powderham Castle. The 
edifice itself belongs to the Decorated period, the 
tower of the church being one hundred feet in 
height. The ruddy stone of which it is built 
gives it a warm and homely appearance. The 
chancel screen at Totnes is of stone, and is both 
gilded and painted. A spiral staircase leads from 
the chancel to the rood-loft, where we find one of 
the old church libraries. The not far distant 
church of Harberton is entitled to notice chiefly 
on account of its screen. 

Returning to examine the fine cruciform church 
at Dartmouth, consecrated by Bishop Brantingham 
(1370-1394), and dedicated to St. Saviour, we 
find in the beautiful interior, besides its misereres 
and pulpit, an oaken screen of graceful design and 
execution. It formerly supported the rood-loft, 
and, still serves to separate the nave from the 
chancel. At Slapton Church, with its Early 
English characteristics, we find a screen which 


has been richly worked. As early as the reign 
of Henry II., the manor of Slapton belonged to 
the ancient De Brians, from whom it descended 
to the Percys. Thus Alnwick, in Northumber- 
land, and Cockermouth, in Cumberland, come to 
be associated with a village in Devon. 

Unless it has been recently " restored," the 
handsome oaken screen which adorns the parish 
church of Honiton is disfigured by paint. Bishop 
Courtenay erected the edifice in 1484, and it was 
dedicated to St. Michael as a priory chapel 
Here rest the remains of Thomas Marwood, who 
is said to have practised the art of medicine for 
seventy-five years, during a portion of which 
time he was physician to Queen Elizabeth. The 
house built by his son at Honiton has survived 
the ravages of fire, and escaped the hand of the 
despoiler, and is interesting as having afforded 
shelter to Charles I. on July 25th, 1644. There is 
a richly-wrought rood-screen in the Perpendicular 
church of St. Peter, Combe Martin the " mile 
long man stye," as Kingsley ungraciously desig- 
nates the straggling village. Fenton, memorable 
on account of its associations with the Pattesons, 
also boasts an ancient screen, as well as a fine altar 
tomb supporting the effigy of an emaciated corpse. 


Collumpton merits special notice. The church, 
in addition to the usual aisles, has a chapel on 
the south side, built, in 1528, by a clothier named 
John Lane, and hence known as Lane's Aisle. 
The roof is elaborately enriched with fan-tracery, 
gilt carved work, ornamental figures of seraphim, 
and other curiosities. The screen is exquisitely 
carved with representations of the vine leaf, and 
near the font are preserved two curiously carved 
pieces of oak, the rare remains of an ancient 
Calvary, with skulls and bones, and the mortise 
by which the cross was secured. The reader 
who has visited countries where Romanism is 
predominant will be able to realize what these 
invaluable relics mean. A curious painting of 
the Crucifixion, and an elaborate screen, dating 
from 1528 may be found at Bradninch, while 
the neighbouring church of Plymtree " contains 
a screen, which has been described in a valuable 
volume by the late rector, the Rev. T. Mozley. 
The chief feature is a fine array of painted 
panels. One of the groups figured represents 
the Adoration of the Three Kings, and in this 
Mr. Mozley identifies the portraits of Henry 
VII., Prince Arthur, and Cardinal Morton, the 
most remarkable Englishman of his period, of 


whom there is no likeness extant if this be not 
one." This allusion to painted panels reminds 
us that the rood screen at Exeter is likewise 
adorned with a series of thirteen oil paintings, 
of very early, and equally rude workmanship, 
but invaluable as illustrations .of Early English 

The screen at Stoke St. Nectan, which is in 
perfect preservation, is elaborately enriched with 
carved work, and it is here also that we find, 
" what is far more noteworthy, the stone altar 
standing in its original place." We may refer 
the reader also to Pinhoe, Bampton, and North 
Molton. Others not less beautiful or suggestive 
than the foregoing might be named, but sufficient 
has been said to indicate how wide a field is here 
presented to the church antiquary. The variety 
of material employed, the nature of the decorative 
work, the illustrations of early art, the symbolism, 
age, and history, all demand attention, and will 
repay research. The few remaining accessories, 
as, for example, the Calvary at Collumpton, and 
the altar at Stoke, are of priceless value to those 
who would completely master the details of a 
pre- Reformation church. 

Some IRuinefc Castles. 

AROUND the castles of old England the 
life of mediaeval times centred in such 
wise that they are inseparably associated with 
whatever of historic interest remains to us from 
the age of chivalry. The grey old ruins are 
eloquent, and there is pathos in their language. 
Laughter and tears are blended, purity and crime 
are alike represented. Here were played those 
games by which empires were lost and won. 
Here noblest blood was shed for noblest cause, 
and here the wretched victim of jealousy and hate 
was secretly done to death. These walls have 
re-echoed alike the cry of despair and the 
pcean of victor. From out these gates has the 
proud lord gone forth to fight for king and 
country, never more to return ; while through 
these gates the beautiful bride, the chivalrous 
knight and wooer, and even the crowned head, 
has passed into the open arms of a lover so 
true, or a subject so loyal, as only England could 

Of all the ruined castles of Devon, none, me- 


thinks, can compare with that of Berry Pomeroy. 
None certainly has left, on my own mind and 
imagination, so vivid an impression. The extent 
of the remains, including the noble gateway and 
its towers, together with the shell of a stately 
mansion of a later date ; the age and nature 
of the architecture ; the retired and entrancing 
situation, and the curious traditions and folk- 
lore associated therewith, all render it unusually 
attractive. Here grows the famous wishing-tree. 
You have only to walk round it backwards three 
times and you obtain all you desire. How many 
have tried it ? How many having tried the task 
have succeeded ? And having tried, and succeeded, 
how many have gained their end? Probably 
few. The tree stands, most provokingly, on the 
side of a shelving bank, and he would be entitled 
to a considerable reward who could thrice encom- 
pass the tree backwards without a fall. For years 
I kept a sacred branch of the famous tree in my 
study, but the hand of sacrilege at last swept it 
away as worthless. Alas ! that the age of poetry 
and romance should so completely have left us ! 

Pomeroy is easy of access. The train will 
convey the tourist to the picturesque town of 
Totnes, and for the rest, if the walking powers 


are feeble, a little silver will provide the needed 
means. The visitor should arrange beforehand 
to have with him, not this or that society, such 
and such costume, provisions, and other material 
aids to enjoyment, but a right frame of mind, a 
becoming mental mood. Claret cup and sand- 
wiches may be dispensed with for a time if the 
poetic and imaginative faculties are alive, and the 
historic memory keen. Thought will carry us 
back to earliest times. We shall fancy the old- 
world builder, delving among earth and rock that 
he may pile up his burgh, stronghold, or 'berry,' 
in a district whose population is sparse, and whose 
manners are rude. We shall see the Conqueror 
sweep across the land, bestowing largess with a 
liberal hand, and witness him here (potentially, at 
least, if not personally) granting to one Ralph de 
Pomeroy some three score lordships, and the right 
to build his castle and establish his baronial seat 
at Berry. We shall watch the banner floating 
in the breeze which bears as badge the king of 
beasts, and shall remember how frequently the 
lion has played the part of totem in Britain. 

In the course of five hundred years we shall 
see the power of the Pomeroys wane, and the 
estate pass to the Seymours. Then the beautiful 


mansion will begin to rise within the fortress, 
whose walls alone remain to-day to tell the story 
of old-time grandeur. No less a sum than 
,20,000 is said to have been spent on the Tudor 
buildings, which even then were not completed. 
Prince, who was vicar of the adjoining church for 
some forty years, and is one of our first 
authorities on matters relating to Devon, informs 
us of the splendour of the apartments, especially 
the dining hall, with its statues in alabaster and 
figures richly carved and coloured, its polished 
marble chimney-piece curiously engraved, and its 
other works of art and vertu. Now all is gone 
the glory is departed, and it is only by a powerful 
effort of the imagination that we can re-people 
the waste places, and fill with life and beauty the 
scene of desolation and decay. A pathway to the 
right of the gateway will lead the visitor to an 
enimence above the quarry, from which he will 
obtain a delightful view. Before leaving the 
neighbourhood we shall inspect the church, with 
its elaborate screen, its Seymour monuments, and 
the tomb of its whilom vicar, Prince, author of 
"The Worthies of Devon." 

It will be decorous for us now to turn to Rouge- 
mount, If Berry appeals to us on the grounds of 


beauty and romance, Exeter is equally clamorous 
for our notice on more purely historical grounds. 
Ignoring historical sequences, we may at the 
outset remind the reader that Shakespeare has 
immortalized the Red Mount in his Richard HI. : 

" Richmond ! When last I was at Exeter, 
The Mayor in courtesy showed me the castle, 
And called it Rougemount ; at which name I started, 
Because a bard of Ireland told me once 
I should not live long after I saw Richmond." 

The traveller in South Devon is struck by the 
ruddy colour of the soil. This is perhaps nowhere 
more noticeable than on the line between Newton 
Abbot and Torquay. Names drawn from these 
natural appearances are frequent. Just as the 
new red sand-stone of Cumberland suggested to 
the Celt the name Penrith, so the like appearance 
in Devonshire supplied the Norman Rougemount. 
Both names mean the same, but the component 
elements are reversed Pen = Mount, Rith = 
Rouge. It is even said that before the Normans 
came Exeter was known as Penryth or Caer-ryth 
and Pencaer. William of Worcester makes 
Rougemount a corruption of the name of a baron 
Rothemund, but he is a myth, while the red soil 
is a fact. 


It may here be noted that in 1880 a new 
window was placed in the Rougemount Hotel, 
Exeter, to commemorate the event alluded to 
by our great bard in the lines we have quoted. 
The -account which John Hoker, city chamber- 
lain and historian, has left us, has been followed 
in the design which the artist has worked out. 
Abridged it reads thus. Richard, during his 
short stay in Exeter viewed the city and the 
castle, which, with the surrounding country greatly 
pleased his Majesty. When, however, they told 
him that it was called Rougemount, he suddenly 
fell info "a greatedumpe." At length, recovering, 
he exclaimed, " I see my dayes be not longe," and 
so it proved. 

We may well believe the Rougemount was used 
as a stronghold from the earliest times. It has 
never, during the historical period, been dissociated 
from fortifications. Kelt and Roman, Saxon and 
Dane, not less than Norman, each in turn has 
had his fortress here for a longer or shorter time, 
and with more or less of power and success. If 
in some respects Exeter, owing to its position, 
has been left alone, in others it has been one 
of the great focus-points of English history. 
Formerly the seat of the West Saxon Kings, 


tradition delighted to tell how the Romans had 
already, under Julius Caesar, prepared for their 
use a castle such as only Roman masons could 
construct. These lovers of tradition also inform 
us that Brutus, the Trojan, founded the city, the 
Romans coming at a later date to carry on what 
he had begun. Tradition has its uses, but it 
must not be elevated to the rank of history till 
it has been weighed in the balance. We are, 
however, on historic ground when we affirm that 
the Romans built a fortress on the Exe, and so 
gave to us the present name of the city the 
Saxon Exan-ceastre, Exeter. We cannot, how- 
ever, now find at Exeter such splendid remains of 
Roman military architecture as Pevensey and 
some other strong-holds supply, and have to be 
content if we can go back to Roman times. 
Flames of fire, and the rude hand of the besieger, 
have done much towards the dismantling of the 
castrum ; time, neglect, or wilful destruction have 
done the rest, and now the remains are meagre 
and unimportant. Yet no visitor to this classical 
city can afford to depart without taking a stroll 
along its ramparts, and endeavouring to recall 
a few of the stirring events with which it has 
been so intimately associated in the past. From 


the year 1068, when the Norman builders com- 
menced their work, down till the time of the 
civil wars, we shall find abundant themes for the 
production of pictures of historic interest. 

From Exeter it will be well to proceed to 
the stately grounds and historic house of Powder- 
ham ; for Powderham Castle holds, we are told, 
" the first place among the ancient mansions of 
the county. No other great house continues so 
fully its ancient glories. Nearly six centuries 
have passed since the Courtenays first seated 
themselves by the Exe, at Powderham, and there 
amidst many vicissitudes they have continued." 
Leland speaks of it in his time as a stout fortress, 
with a barbican or bulwark to beat the haven. It 
was originally founded by its Norman owner, 
who, as was frequently the case, took for surname 
the manor which he held, or the one which he 
chose for his seat. We read that the manor 
passed from John de Powderham to Humphry 
de Bohun, Earl of Hereford. Humphry's 
daughter being married in 1325 to Hugh 
Courtenay, second Earl of Devon by that 
name, the estate passed to that family ; and 
when Earl Hugh gave it to his son, Philip, 
the castle was remodelled and strengthened. 


From that time till this there has been a 
Courtenay owner without a break, though for 
a time the earldom was allowed to lapse. The 
castle sustained two sieges during the Civil 
wars. Being strongly fortified for the King, 
it was attacked in 1645 b 7 Fairfax, who failed 
in his attempt to carry it. The next year, 
however, it succumbed. While the visitor is 
here he should endeavour to see the art treasures 
which the house contains. A walk to the 
Belvedere, and a careful inspection of the church, 
will also be rewarded. 

There is, perhaps, little to choose between the 
remaining ruins. We will therefore retrace our 
steps to Totnes. The position is central for the 
antiquary, and will supply us with much that is of 
historical value. Putting aside all traditional 
allusions to Trojan and Roman, and all semi- 
historical side-lights on the life of Kelt and 
Saxon, we plunge at once in medias res in the days 
of the Norman Conquest. At this time Totnes 
was already a town of considerable note, its 
population being second only to that of Exeter 
among the Devonshire burghs, and its lands 
forming part of the demesne of the royal Confessor. 
He who with liberal hand had given to Pomeroy 


some three-score manors, lavished upwards of 
a hundred upon Judhel, another of his followers, 
and forthwith the Norman lord established his 
seat here and became henceforth Judhel of 
Totnes. He, doubtless, commenced fortifications 
without delay, and though the splendid keep 
which still remains seems to be of a later 
date, we shall not be far wrong in assuming 
that the foundations of the fortress are Norman. 
The keep is circular in form, and being profusely 
mantled with ivy forms a most picturesque ruin, 
while it commands an outlook of more than usual 
beauty and interest. The Duke of Somerset has 
thrown the grounds open to the public. 

From Totnes we may revisit Pomeroy, then 
pass on to Dartmouth. The usual guide books 
will supply all the information necessary for the 
tourist, as he takes this delightful journey. It is 
needless to say that the river Dart affords the 
readiest and most delightful means of reaching 
the quaint old town at its mouth. It is an easy 
thing for your multum in parvo traveller to leave 
Exeter in the morning, " do " Totnes, Berry 
Pomeroy, the river Dart, Kingswear and Dart- 
mouth, with a few other places of interest, and 
get back to his hotel again the same night. We 


should wish, however, for a little more leisure for 
our reader. He may prefer, on arrival, to inspect 
Kingswear first. The foundations of a castle 
which are here to be seen are of peculiar interest, 
because, associated therewith are the groove and 
holes in the rock which received the massive 
guard-chain thrown across the river of yore to 
protect it against invasion. Near by was the 
guard-room provided for the men whose duty it 
was to haul up or drop the cable, the holes 
into which the woodwork was inserted being still 
in existence on the face of the rock. The town 
is ancient, and high above the church is a fortress 
of five bastions, spoken of by Fairfax as the 
Kingsworth Fort. 

Dartmouth Castle occupies the corresponding 
position on the other bank of the river, and the 
cable connected the twin fortresses. The round 
tower probably dates only from the time of 
Henry VII. Yet the square tower is still more 
modern. Ruins of a more ancient castle, how- 
ever, may be found near the Chapel, and 
from the importance of Dartmouth during the 
thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, when it 
even rivalled the Cinque Ports, we may 
assume that its fortification dates at least as 



far back as that period. Mr. Worth has 
clearly shewn that the position of Dartmouth 
relatively to that of Totnes gave the latter 
place the premier position in days when such 
exposed situations as that of Dartmouth were 
unsafe for the carrying on of trade and 
commerce. Only in an age when castles, 
strongholds, and defences could be readily 
reared, would it be possible for places so 
liable to attack to develope. The choice 
of Dartmouth, in 1190, as the rendezvous 
for a portion of the Lion-hearted Richard's 
crusading fleet, indicates the position it then 
held, and a hundred years previously Rufus 
had chosen it as the port whence he would 
embark for Normandy. 

" I doubt if a more picturesque place than 
Dartmouth, from the river, can be found in 
England," says an enthusiastic writer. We 
endorse his words, and may add that the 
picturesque ruins of the castle are not the least 
among its charms. 

It is to be feared that after having seen 
Rougemount and Berry, Totnes, Dartmouth 
and Powderham, the student will look ask- 
ance at the remaining ruins. It is my 


duty, however, to name them in order, that 
a correct idea may be obtained of the 
Devonshire of the past from the strategic 
and military standpoint. We therefore return 
to Totnes, and hasten to Okehampton, of 
which it is said that there is no town in 
Devon which seems to be more thoroughly 
the creation of its castle. Kissing goes by 
favour ; so in olden times did land. One 
Baldwin, whose aliases are confusing, secured 
no fewer than a hundred-and-eight manors at 
the Conquest, and from these he selected 
Okehampton for his stronghold. A Norman 
castle was, therefore, reared here, in the 
very heart of his wide domains ; but of the 
solid masonry which characterized the military 
architecture of the age, there are now no 
remains. The site is there, and some two 
miles distant the low Norman tower of 
Belston church indicates what the castle was 
like, for both were the erections of the same 
body of masons. The present ruins consist 
of a small keep which time and nature have 
touched into beauty, belonging to the Per- 
pendicular or Decorated period ; remains of 
the great hall with its huge chimney, and 


a suite of chambers together with part of a 
chapel, with piscina and a recess, which was 
probably used as an oratory. The group 
together forms an interesting and pleasing 

The Castle of Richard de Rivers, of which 
the ruins may still be seen at Tiverton, was 
on the north side of the town. At present it 
consists of the remains of the great gateway 
together with portions of the walls and towers 
covered with nature's own garb of lichen and 
ivy. It was dismantled by Fairfax in 1645, 
having been erected about noo. During the 
reign of Edward sundry additions were made, 
some portions of which still remain, in striking 
contrast to the fine twelfth-century gateway. 
"Tiverton Castle," says Mr. Worth, "has 
borne its share in the history of Devon, though 
not as prominently as its importance would 
suggest. It had part in the wars of Stephen, 
and was of some little note in those of the 
Roses, as a Lancastrian, and afterwards as a 
Yorkist stronghold. In after years it was the 
place where the Courtenays lived in their 
greatest splendour. It stood a siege, moreover, 
in the wars of the Commonwealth." 


To the same Richard belonged also the 
castle at Plympton. He was Earl of Devon 
in the reign of Henry I., and it is probable 
that the original structure was either wholly, 
or in part, erected during his life-time. At the 
present time the earthworks are still in good 
preservation, while the ruins of plain Norman 
masonry include a circular keep rising at the 
east end of the base court. Cavities occur in the 
walls shewing where the wood-work, used in 
supporting the stone-work, was formerly inserted. 
Plympton Castle only once figured in history, 
and then its fall was so ignominious that it has 
never again recovered from the blow. It was 
remarkable for the brevity of its career. Erected, 
as we surmise, during the reign of Henry (noo 
1135) it was, during the reign of Stephen, 
practically destroyed. Baldwin, the son of 
Richard, its founder, took up the cause of 
Mathilda against Stephen. Though the garrison 
surrendered without striking a blow, the castle 
was dismantled, and its glory departed. Though 
it was soon afterwards restored, and formed the 
centre of some skirmishing during the reign of 
John, the only other event of interest associated 
with it was the siege of Plymouth, when it was 


made the head-quarters of Prince Maurice. In 
1644 it was taken by the Earl of Essex, and, after 
sundry vicissitudes, became the property of the 
Earls of Morley. The site is surrounded by a 
moat which is used as a promenade. " The 
antiquary may speculate on a singular hollow, 
which runs through the wall of the keep, and may 
remind him of those in the Scottish ' duns,' or 
Pictish towers, while the lover of the pict- 
uresque will take in the beautiful prospect which 
the eminence affords of the surrounding district. 
A similar promenade may be made on the 
ramparts of the Citadel at Plymouth. Beware, 
however, of the firing of the guns. My umbrella 
was once ripped into shreds by being held open 
during a salute. 

About the beginning of the thirteenth century, a 
castle was erected by Lord Briwere at Axminster. 
Though some foundations have been discovered 
during excavations, which seem to belong to the 
building, no other trace of it is now to be seen. 
At Hemyock, however, some important ruins, 
including the grassy moat, the main gateway, and 
the ivy clad towers of a castle, erected by the 
Hidons, may be seen. It belongs to the time of 
the early Edwards, and was at one, period a place 


of great strength. It was in use during the Civil 
wars, was taken in 1642, and dismantled shortly 
afterwards by Cromwell. Of its earlier history 
little is known, but the angler, the antiquary, and 
the artist, will alike find pleasure in a visit to 
the Vale of Hemyock. 

Earthworks also exist at Denbury, Cadbury, 
Dolbury, and elsewhere, concerning which, as 
already stated, there are local rhymes which 
indicate a former connection with royal Danes. 
The Christmas of 1645 was rendered memorable 
for Cadbury by Fairfax, who made this place 
his rendezvous. Remains of a castle built by the 
Mariscos may be seen on Lundy Island, and 
Torrington has its Castle Hill. A castle existed 
here in the thirteenth century, which the Sheriff 
of Devon was instructed to demolish. In 1340 
it was rebuilt by Robert de Merton, but during 
the Civil Wars the church played the part of 
a citadel. The remains of an Edwardian Castle 
may also be seen at Gidleigh, erected during 
the time when the manor was held by a family 
known as Prouz. 

There remains but one other ruin to which 
I need refer. Everyone versed in Devonshire 
lore has heard of Lydford Law. At Lydford 


a castle has existed from Norman times. In 1216 
it was granted to William, Lord Briwere, who 
already owned Axminster, and was a trusty 
servant to King John. At the beginning of the 
fourteenth century it figures as a prison, in 
connection with the famous Stannaries ; and at 
a later time, as appears from some notes by Dr. 
James Yonge, it was again employed as a jail. 
Lydford, he says is a " small town where is an 
old castle, which, in the late rebellion, was made 
a prison, but a sad one, God wott ; many men 
perishing there. The people are rude, and 
ill-bred. Formerly it was a borough, sent 
members to Parliament, and kept court ; but 
after such a prejudicial way, as it became a 
saying Like Lydford law, hang first and judge 
him afterwards." 

The building, as Mr. Worth has pointed out, 
is a true keep, quite unlike the shell keeps of 
Totnes and Plympton. It probably dates from 
the latter part of the twelfth century, and 
together with the castles at Okehampton, Plymp- 
ton and Totnes, formed a link in the chain of 
border fortresses by which the road skirting 
Dartmoor was commanded. Few buildings in 
Devonshire have had a more eventful history, or 


one which has extended over a longer period. 
That history has been carefully traced by Mr. 
Worth, and may be found in the Transactions of 
the Devonshire Association. 

Cburcbes as (Samsons, 

WHETHER by choice or of necessity, the 
church has frequently been called upon 
to play an important part as a place of refuge and 
defence in time of war. It is not my purpose here 
to show to what extent the church tower may have 
been originally intended as a military stronghold. 
There are clear indications, in many instances, of 
militant ideas in the structure of our ecclesiastical 
edifices ; but I shall here confine myself to historical 
events, and chiefly those which relate to the civil 
wars. During this period of sad unrest, when 
brother fought with brother, and every man's hand 
was against his neighbour, those places which were 
unprotected by a castle or fortress would have 
been in a terrible plight but for the strong walls 
and towers of the parish church. Hither, in many 
cases, the women, children, and cattle were driven 
for security ; while, in many instances, the soldiers 
on one side or the other made the tower their 
bulwark against the foe, or the prison in which 
they confined their captives. 


There formerly stood in the parish of Dawlish 
a pre-Norman church which was evidently built in 
part as a protection against the Danes, but this 
most interesting relic of antiquity has, sad to say, 
been destroyed. Our first illustration shall there- 
fore be drawn from the neighbouring parish of 
Powderham. Though there was a castle here 
this did not prevent the church being used during 
the period of strife, to which I have already- 
alluded. Indeed, the presence of the castle on 
the one hand, affording a ready retreat for the 
Parliamentarians, led to the garrisoning of the 
church by their foes. Hence it was that this 
Perpendicular building with its aisles continued to 
the east end so as to form a triple chancel, 
became the scene of strife and warfare, and was 
occupied by the Roundheads. 

The famous church of Ottery St. Mary, a 
miniature Exeter Cathedral, was during the same 
year 1645 occupied during a period of five weeks 
by the Parliamentary troops, and they would 
probably have remained in possession much 
longer had not the pestilence issued its stern 
instructions to " move on ! " Oliver Cromwell 
visited the town, so we are told, with a view to 
raising troops and money, but as he failed in his 


endeavour, he gave license to his iconoclastic 
followers, who ruthlessly decapitated a number of 
the figures on the historic old monuments. The 
middle of the seventeenth century was therefore 
for Ottery a time of great trouble, and the 
vandalism of the age has left its marks till our 
own day. 

Scant reverence for sacred buildings had been 
entertained ever since the days of the bluff king, 
Henry the VI I Ith. He had in 1 548 sent an angry 
letter to the Mayor of Plymouth, and his brethren 
in office, in which he expresses his surprise and 
displeasure because they delayed the fortifying of 
St. Michael's Chapel, so as to make it a bulwark 
against invaders, when such a simple means of 
keeping foes at bay may secure them. If St. 
Michael's was not profaned St. Andrew's was. 
This, the mother church of Plymouth dates from 
the twelfth century, and now consists of chancel, 
nave, aisles, transepts, and tower at the west end 
erected about 1460. In 1549, the rebels who 
sought to restore Romanism, made an attack 
upon the town, and, though they were beaten off 
with a considerable loss, they managed to inflict 
upon the church and town an irreparable injury. 
The scanty records of the event inform us that 


the steeple was then burnt " with all the townes 
evydence in the same." Then it was that the 
greater portion of the muniments of the borough 
of Plymouth was destroyed. 

A more humiliating desecration was witnessed 
in connection with the same event at St. Thomas' 
Church, in Exeter. The vicar, who had been 
very active during the rebellion, was hanged on 
the tower of his own church in full canonicals, 
and there his body was allowed to remain until 
Mary came to the throne. He who had died a 
rebel was then regarded as a martyr, and his 
remains were removed from the scaffold to the 
tomb. Such facts as these, while they fill the 
mind with disgust and pain, preserve for us a 
wonderfully helpful key to the study of the moral 
and religious life of that eventful age. 

The story of this anti-protestant vicar is full of 
interest for more reasons than one. His portrait 
has been drawn for us by a Devonshire writer in 
the following brief lines. " This man had many 
good things in him. He was of no great stature, 
but well-set and mightily compact. He was a 
very good wrestler ; shot well, both in the long- 
bow and also in the cross-bow ; he handled his 
hand-gun and piece very well ; he was a very 


good woodman and a hardy, and such an one as 
would not give his head for the polling, nor his 
beard for the washing. He was a companion in 
any exercises of activity, and of a courteous and 
gentle behaviour." 

His gentleness, however, did not save him. 
Sir Walter Scott was acquainted with this man's 
biography. The notes appended to Marmion 
may be profitably read in connection with this 
chapter, and among them will be found the fore- 
going. Scott's biographer has even suggested 
that the " Friar Tuck," or Clerk of Copmanhurst, 
who figures so bravely in Ivanhoe, is in part a 
reproduction of Welsh of Exeter. We learn from 
Holinshed that when the rebel priest was hung in 
chains on his church tower, he was surrounded by 
"a holy- water bucket and sprinkle, a sacring bell, 
a pair of beads, and such other like popish trash." 
Amid it all, however, he very patiently took his 
death, and thus showed himself worthy to find 
rank in the noble army of martyrs. 

Another of the towns which was considerably 
harried during the Civil Wars, was Axminster. 
Its church was originally a very fine building, and 
even now its Norman doorway, its Decorated 
nave and chancel with sedilia and piscina are 


worthy attention. Its oaken pulpit dates from 
1633, but eleven years before the royal garrison 
was placed here under Sir Richard Cholmondeley. 
It appears that the church on this occasion was 
too great a strength for the attacking party. In 
November. 1644, Sir Richard was succeeded by 
Major Walker, who, during an attack on Lyme 
Regis, was killed with many of his followers. The 
remnant of the Cavaliers, we are told, were chased 
into the church of St. Mary, at Axminster, where 
they were able to defy their pursuers. 

As at Powderham, so at Tiverton, the castle 
and church were both occupied, but by the same 
party, and not by the opposing forces. " Tiverton 
town leant strongly to the Parliament, but the 
castle was garrisoned for the king, the church being 
also occupied as an important outpost. In October, 
1645, General Massey was detached by Fairfax 
to beseige the works, which were then under the 
command of Sir Gilbert Talbot. After battering 
awhile, the castle and church were taken by storm 
on Sunday the iQth with much slaughter." The 
church, which is dedicated to St. Peter, has an 
embattled tower 116 feet in height. It presents 
numerous features of interest, including the altar- 
piece, screen, sculptures, and brasses. It was at 


one time bestowed upon the Cluniac monks of 
St. Martin, near Paris. 

The results of this occupation of the Church 
were disastrous from the standpoint of the 
antiquary. During the assault, the monuments of 
the famous Courtenays were destroyed, together 
with the chapel, which contained them. One of 
these had royal associations, being to the memory 
of Catherine, daughter of Edward the Fourth, and 
wife of William Courtenay, Earl of Devon. 
Another to the third Earl of Devon, commonly 
known as the blind and good earl, is remarkable 
on account of its epitaph, given in another 
connexion. The former of these links the church 
of Tiverton with that of Colyton, where in the fine 
old church of St. Andrews, we may find the curious 
memorial known as the Little Choky Bone 

A similiar interest attaches to the Church and 
Churchyard of St. Budeaux, in the neighbourhood 
of Plymouth. Fortified by the Royalists in 1646, 
they were stormed by the Roundheads and carried. 
Standing like a beacon on the coast near here is 
Revelstoke Church, which, if it is not so closely 
associated with the Civil Wars, yet seems to be 
intimately connected with revelry and warfare. 


Writers who are versed in local lore say that 
Wembury means the fort or bury of the Viking, 
and like Revelstoke commemorates a battle, or a 
series of skirmishes with the Danes. " Moreover 
the situation of the respective churches close to 
the water's edge seems to have in it something of 
a commemorative character," says Mr. Worth. 
At a short distance to the west of Dartmouth may 
be seen the little known church of St. Clement, 
Townstall, with a tower 70 feet high. This was 
fortified by the Royalists with 10 guns and def- 
ended by 100 men. We may presume that others, 
besides Welsh, the Vicar of St. Thomas, took sides, 
and we have an amusing illustration in later days of 
the way in which history repeats itself. When, 
early in the present century, it was Anticipated 
that Napoleon would invade England by way of 
Torbay, the able-bodied men of Torquay were 
invited "to meet the Clergyman at the church to 
consider how they could render the greatest 
assistance to their neighbours and country." In 
the olden times a good deal of military blood 
flowed in ecclesiastical veins, and even bishops 
were by no means loth to lead an army to battle. 

For the proceedings of Fairfax in Devonshire 
during this troublesome period of the Civil Wars, 


we are indebted to his chaplain, Joshua Sprigge. 
Mr. King has summarized a portion of his 
narrative as follows. " The house of Great 
Fulford, with its picturesque park, and noble 
beech avenues, was among the first to surrender, 
and was placed under the command of Colonel 
Okey, the regicide. Before advancing to Ash- 
burton, near which town the chief remaining 
strength of the Royalists was collected, Fairfax 
reviewed his troops within the area of the ancient 
camp of Cadbury, on a lofty hill commanding the 
windings of the Exe a gathering which, with all 
its accompaniments, may safely be commended 
to any historical painter in quest of a picturesque 
subject. Ashburton where the house in which 
Fairfax lodged is still pointed out speedily fell ; 
and during the skirmishes which took place in its 
immediate neighbourhood Cromwell appeared on 
the scene, visiting Devonshire for the first and 
only time. He fell suddenly upon Wentworth's 
brigade at Bovey Tracey, disturbing the officers 
at cards, as Puritan scandal-mongers delight to 
repeat, and compelling them to beat a hasty 
retreat to Ilsington, the manor and birthplace of 
Ford the dramatist, where they garrisoned them- 
selves in the church." The whole of this district 


teems with interest. Perhaps, however, it will 
suffice if I give the account of the capture of 
Torrington, in 1646, as typical of the kind of work 
which was carried on elsewhere. It is taken from 
a letter written by John Rushworth to the Speaker 
of the House of Commons, which finds a place in 
the Sixth Report of the Commission appointed to 
examine the great Historical Manuscripts of the 
Nation. Writing from Torrington, February, 
1 7th, 1646, he says, "On Saturday, the I4th, we 
marched from Crediton to Chimleigh, ten miles ; 
the day very rainy, and the ways deep. On Sun- 
day we marched two miles, when we had intelligence 
that Lord Hopton was at Torrington ; and hearing 
that there was a troop of horse at Burrington, the 
General sent a party against them, who routed 
them, and brought Lieutenant-Colonel Dundashe 
prisoner, mortally wounded to King's Ash [now 
Ash-Reigny.] .... February the i6th, the 
General, with his forces, joining those that had 
gone on to King's Ash, drew up his army in 
battalia on the Moor, within five miles of Torring- 
ton, and then advanced towards the town. After 
some skirmishing, a party was sent against Squire 
Roll's house, which the enemy quitted without 
resistance. After some further skirmishing . . . 


we forced the enemy into the town, whereupon the 
horse were sent in, and charged the enemy in the 
streets, and after hard fighting drove them out of 
the barricades at the further side of the town. 
Many prisoners were taken and put into the church, 
but many threw away their arms and escaped in 
the darkness. No sooner were we possessed of 
the town, than the enemy's magazine, about eighty 
barrels of powder, which were in the church, blew 
up ; whether fired by accident or on purpose we 
cannot yet learn. Many of the prisoners were 
killed, many houses defaced, and the whole town 
shaken. Some of our men in the churchyard were 
killed, and two great pieces of lead fell within half 
a horse's length of the General. One whole barrel 
of powder was blown out into the street without 
taking fire. The enemy, seeing the explosion, 
made another charge under John Digby, brother 
to Lord Digby, but were repulsed by our musket- 
eers ; and our horse, instantly advancing, began 
the pursuit at eleven at night, and I hope will give 
a good account of the business." 

There yet remains one other illustration of our 
subject, though it is not connected with Round- 
heads and Royalists. Some few miles off the 
coast of Devon lies the Isle of Lundy, in times 


past the property of the Moriscos. The principal 
event in the history of the Island relates to its 
capture by a party of Frenchmen, during the reign 
of William and Mary. The method adopted 
reminds us of that resorted to for the destruction 
of Troy. The wooden horse, however, was 
changed into a coffin, and the plan was successful. 
" A ship of war, under Dutch colours, anchored in 
the roadstead, and sent ashore for some milk, 
pretending that the captain was sick. The 
islanders supplied the milk for several days, when 
at length the crew informed them that their captain 
was dead, and asked permission to bury him in 
consecrated ground. This was immediately 
granted, and the inhabitants assisted in carrying 
the coffin to the grave. It appeared to them 
rather heavy, but they, never for a moment, 
suspected the nature of its contents. The coffin, 
filled with arms and ammunition, was carried into 
the church, and the Frenchmen then requested 
the islanders to withdraw for a time while they 
performed the usual offices. They were informed 
that the opportunity to see the body interred 
would, in due course, be afforded them, and were 
not long kept in suspense. The doors were 
suddenly flung open, and the Frenchmen, armed 


from the pretended receptacle of the dead, rushed 
with triumphant shouts upon the astonished 
inhabitants, and made them prisoners. Thus has 
the Church in various ways been made to play an 
important part in history. 

Braeees, flDonuments, an& lEpitapbs, 

IN monuments of the altar tomb class, and 
in sepulchral brasses " No untrustworthy 
guides to the ancient condition of a province," as 
Mr. King reminds us Devonshire is far from 
deficient. They are scattered throughout the 
entire county, and frequently occur in remote 
churches, among the hills, or on the edge of the 
moorland, to which access is even now difficult, 
and where we should least expect to find such 
memorials of former prosperity. The antiquary 
learns, however, as he wanders from place to place 
among the churches, castles, and relics of a former 
age, that it is the unexpected which happens, and 
he comes to regard it almost as a matter of course 
that the most despised sanctuary and dishonoured 
shrine shall yield him some treasure or supply 
some key to a problem hitherto unsolved. He 
regards nothing as common or unclean. In the 
following notes no attempt will be made to observe 
either a strictly chronological or topographical 
order, the illustrations being brought together 


rather with a view to the production of a pleasing 
narrative than a catalogue of antiquities. 

An early visit should be paid to Axminster and 
the adjoining district. Not far away is the quiet 
little town of Colyton, a place of great antiquity, 
and one which has been from time immemorial 
associated with the best blood of the shire. In 
the parish we find the famous seat of the 
Courtenays, who, in 1280, built a castellated 
mansion here, still known as Colcombe. It ranks 
to-day amongst those famous farm-houses which 
render Devonshire so attractive. It is in the 
church at Colyton that we find the noble altar 
tomb with a canopy known as the Little Choky 
Bone. The recumbent figure represents a beautiful 
maiden wearing a coronet. The royal arms are 
associated with those of the house of Courtenay, 
and the inscription informs us that " Margaret, 
daughter of William Courtenay, Earl of Devon, 
and the Princess Katherine, youngest daughter 
of Edward IV., King of England, died at Col- 
combe, choked by a fish bone, A.D. MDXII." The 
church itself is a stately Perpendicular building, 
the octagonal tower of which forms a conspicuous 
landmark to all the country side. It contains, in 
addition to the tombs of Margaret Courtenay and 


the Poles, a fine Corinthian monument to the 
memory of William Drake, of Yardbury, Colyton, 
and other members of the family by marriage. 
An arched recess contains three small effigies in a 
kneeling posture, representing William Westofer 
with his wife and daughter. A Latin inscription, 
dated 1622, accompanies the figures, and is thus 
rendered into English ; 


" Reader, whoever thou mayst be, behold my tomb, 
Where free from earthly pain my bones repose. 
Close by behold three figures greet thine eye ; 
The first mine own, the next my wife, the third my daughter dear. 
Dust I am, such will my wife be, such my child. 
Farewell ! live wife in Christ, my child live thou in God." 

Referring again to the Courtenays, we may 
remark that Tiverton was formerly in their 
possession. One of the family was known as the 
good Earl, and a stately tomb erected to his 
memory in the church of the town bore the 
following inscription : 

" Hoe ! Hoe ! who lyes here ? 
Tis I, the goode Erie of Devonshere, 
With Kate, my wyfe, to mee full deere. 
That wee spent wee hadde, 
That wee gave wee have, 
That wee left wee lost." 


The latter part is familiar to everyone who has 
collected grave-yard literature. " Kate, my wyfe," 
was the Princess Katherine, mother of Margaret 
Courtenay, and daughter of Edward IV., men- 
tioned above. 

The chief monumental storehouse in Devonshire 
is naturally to be found in Exeter ; the Cathedral 
being the last resting-place of numerous bishops 
and notables, or the most fitting place for their 
memorials. That on the north side of the Lady 
Chapel, with effigy and canopy of alabaster, is to 
the memory of Bishop Stafford, who was for some 
time Lord Chancellor to Richard II. and Henry IV. 
In St. Gabriel's Chapel, on the south side, is an 
elegant monument to Bishop Bronescombe, who 
was in authority during the third quarter of the 
thirteenth century. It was under his direction 
that the earliest existing Bishops' register was 
begun. Though he died in 1280, his tomb is 
supposed to date from the reign of Edward III. 
The Decorated tomb of Bishop Stapledon, who 
was murdered in the reign of Edward II. by a 
mob in London, also merits attention. To this 
worthy of the first quarter of the fourteenth 
century we owe the elaborate sedilia on the south 
side of the sanctuary ; while the best judges 


atao attribute to hi* taate and munificence the 

.,,|, ,,,|,,| , , ( r;'op..l ihfOlM* will. wl.M !. llir ,;ilhrdr;d 

iftwloni'-d If'' vaulM-d, and I.M.L.U/ n " 'I 'I" 

choir in wholr or part, ^laaed several window*, and 
made preparations by the purchaie of A large quan- 
tity of material* for further improvement*, What 
he could not personally perform, hi* aucceiwor*, 

JM'ipiM'd hy |||'; r nl I H |';l.r;in ,ui'l (" li' I'r.lly, HIM!' i 

took ; MO that it htt been affirmed that from 1300 
to 1450 an average ^um of >f ,000 per annum wan 

r ,, M.I-I on I)M i.uii'iin:; The amount ieem* 
incredible when we remember how much it 
represent* in thr money of to-day, Stapledon 
wa the founder of a Hall at Oxford, which at 

fll<;l IM.M- III*: M,HM'\ hilt bn .till* I M'.WII 

aft Kxeter (>olleye, The oldest monument ii 
attributed to litahop WarelwiuU, ncph'-w of id- 
CoiKjUeror, and foiinder of th( original Norman 
fabric, who i Maid to have reined hi.4 nll'M-r on 
aOGOUnt of blindneili The tomb of Hiwhop Mar- 

slwll, who iiddrd llir I , .,,| N < | M) M !. i . in (he , (mil ; 

thai of Mwhop Oiiivil brin^ in llir L,nl\ < hapd 
I "ili- I MI- i JM alli'ilMiinl id. i. con.'iiniriioii ol 

the. Cathedral on Iti present HIICH, At the weit; 

(t'ont will In 1 found ihr i-.m!. or monument ol 
( H-iindiNiin, who nilr.l ,|iiiin ri ih. im .l-!l. 

;, M< NMMKNT:;, ANI> KITI ,\rn:, /., 
I ihc lot n I ccni 1 1 niin Me (mind lli' - Iniililni 

'il ill I I I | >l < ><> I < ',.,<< Ill) | )!('(('( I tllC |IM \ < . M I K I. Ml | ',< ;. 
< I CM III .1 I I < I ill' -Mil!' I H II |< I I III/ tO Si, l'< I < I Ml' 

'Mr-, , ,| .HI ( MI.!' i.u. .1 ii ..... ' in .1 i H .mi ihilly 
' iil|iiui< 'I i< ' * . . in MM vv.ill nl lli< iKnih .n .! i . 
| )< >| >i il,nl\ ,ii 1 1 il)iile< I in lii',ho|> I ,,ii y, who is said 
1 1 lii' ' 1 1 ' ! < > 1 . i . 1 1 \ . 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 y 1 1 1 < 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 < .1 1 1 . i i \ 
t\.\\ -,' l.i .1 in I .cill. 

! M .in r < i. i we- in.iy n;ilm,illy |MVI In ihe 
mini, i ..... ii\ .il .n < Mi. i \ Si., whi< h w;i: 
I. n ' ly ill- '''il ol ill- l'i',h<>|> < .1 Miidr.' ui, who 
' <MII|,|. h <l ili< < iilc < I I. i. we '.kill liM'l ili< 

I >f .H il 1 1 1 ll ill.llhli' 1 1 n >i 1 1 ii 1 1 1 1 1 . Will) ('Hr'Y .N| il M Ml ('( I 

l\' .ui"' I., (-1\ < i>|i inl'-c iL< <>n|y I )rvoi1 
.In)' in- MM inn MI in he lonnd in (he whole <>i 

( .r. .- Ii M ,i .il \v i I ill I he ( .il IK i Ii .il-. MI- I 

( Illll'll' , '! I H'LlIld MI'I W.llf'S. Ill ill- ..NIK 

'Imi'li in ill ii hillllr, i>|| |||e ||()|'||| .ind .nlllh 
.id . <! tic I1.IVC, ,illd '.lirrnllllded |>y hll^c ,illd 

< I ' < 1 1 . 1 1 < < I < . 1 1 K ' 1 1 1 . lip- .in 1 1 ' I i ' * ' > 1 1 1 1 n e i n < 1 1 . 1 1 ' 

i i ' hi i\ < .1 I IK I > .( .. wlln IK <l .'I >< MI! i ;'.< ., MI. I 
In . \Yil< HI < >lh.. Mi'l | >.ime < -i .mi Ii ..Ml. A 

UK illl INK 'I ll 111 (lie < IlilM ll\.lld, < M I' <l l>\ .ill) .. ii|> 

lion, K mind n . >! ' )ir |nhn ' <>|. i nl'-e, vvhn did 

mill h lol tic IM Mill il\ ui" Mix) I < .!< .1 Ml K i o| Mi- 
I ||e| e I', IK >l Imr ; . llowe\ ('I , e|l ||''I U 

' -l' ' 


the church or elsewhere, to perpetuate the memory 
of the most famous son of this quiet country town, 
Samuel Taylor Coleridge. A prophet is not 
without honour, save in his own country. 

The Drakes have left their mark in many 
places. In Musbury Church we find a monument 
with black-letter inscription which reads : "Here 
lyeth the body of John Drake, of Ashe, Esq., and 
Amy his wife, daughter of Sir Roger Graynfield, 
Knight, by whom he had issue six sons, viz. : 
Barnard, Robert, and Richard, whereof lived three 
at his death. He died 4 Oct., 1558 ; she died 18 
Feb., 1577." The allusion to six children is 
peculiar, but we must assume that the three 
unnamed passed away before reaching years of 
discretion, since the three named can be traced in 
later years. Barnard remained at Ashe in posses- 
sion of the patrimony, rose to distinction, was 
knighted by Elizabeth in 1585, and died next 
year of gaol fever. His monument in Colyton 
Church bears the following inscription : " Heere is 
the monument of Sir Barnard Drake, Knight, who 
had to wife Dame Garthroyd, the daughter of 
Bartholomew Fortescue, of Filleigh, Esq., by 
whom he had three sons and three daughters, 
whereof were five, living at his death ; viz. John, 


Hugh, Margaret, Mary, and Ellen ; he died 10 
Ap., 1586, and Dame Garthroyd his wife was 
heere buried 12 Feb., 1601, unto the memory of 
whom John Drake, Esq., his son hath set this 
monument, A.D. 1611." 

This Sir Barnard erected in Filleigh Church a 
memorial to his brother-in-law, Richard Fortescue. 
It consists of an effigy on a brass, representing an 
esquire with sword and spurs, and a complete suit 
of armour of the period, kneeling before a pries 
dieu on which a book lies open. The hands are 
uplifted in prayer, helmet and gauntlets lie in front, 
while underneath is the following quaint legend. 

" Fforget who can yf that he lyft to see, 
Ffortescue of Ffylleghte the seventh of that degree, 
Remembrance of a frynde his brother Drake doth showe, 
Presenting this unto the eyes of moo. 
Hurtful to none, and fryndlye to the moste 
The earth his bones, the heavens possesse his goste." 

Colyton, Axminster, and Musbury Churches will 
be found to supply numerous other links in the 
chain of the Drake pedigree, to which it is not 
necessary to allude further in this connexion. 

Among the epitaphs which are noted only for 
their humour or quaintness the following may be 
specially noticed. In the churchyard at Bideford 
we find a stone inscribed with these lines : 


" Here lies the body of Mary Sexton, 
Who pleased many a man, but never vex'd one ; 
Not like the woman who lies under the next stone." 

From Dartmouth we obtain the following : 

"Thomas Goldsmith, who died 1714. 
He commanded the Snap Dragon as Privateer belonging 
to this port, in the reign of Queen Anne, in which vessel 
he turned pirate, and amassed much riches. 

Men that are virtuous serve the Lord ; 

And the Devil's by his friends adored ; 

And as they merit get a place 

Amidst the bless'd or hellish race ; 

Pray then, ye learned clergy, show 

Where can this brute, Tom Goldsmith, go ? 

Whose life was one continued evil, 

Striving to cheat God, man, and Devil." 

The south aisle of St. Andrew's Church, Ash- 
burton, contains a tablet with inscription to the 
memory of the first Lord Ashburton ; but the 
curious will be more interested in the following 
examples of pathos and humour to be found else- 
where within the 'sacred enclosure. The first is 
the lament of one of Ashburton's scholarly sons 
over one whose loss he deeply mourned. Gifford 
thus utters his lament : 

" I wish I was where Anna lies, 

For I am sick of lingering here ; 
And every hour affection cries, 
' Go and partake her humble bier.' 


I wish I could ! For, when she died, 
I lost my all ; and life has proved, 

Since that sad hour, a dreary void, 
A waste, unlovely and unloved." 

The other is humorous, and runs : 

" Here I lie, at the chancel door, 
Here I lie, because I'm poor ; 
The farther in, the more you pay, 
Here I lie as warm as they." 

There are indications, however, that it was not 
altogether on the ground of poverty that the writer 
lay where he did. A similar inscription was 
formerly found on the stone of a man named 
Docton at Stoke St. Nectan. 

A few miles from Barnstaple, on the road to 
South Moulton, is the church of Swimbridge, 
where we find an epitaph to an attorney of a 
dozen lines in length, which grimly puns upon the 
profession of the deceased. It commences : 

" Loe with a warrant seal'd by God's decree, 
Death, his grim sergeant hath arrested me;" 

and reminds one of the oft-quoted, but little to be 
admired, inscription to the memory of George 
Routleigh, watchmaker, of Lydford, whose out- 
side case " here lies in horizontal position," etc. 
These and similar specimens of sepulchral wit 


may well be left for the study of other and more 
pleasing works. The visitor who can obtain per- 
mission to inspect the private chapel connected 
with Ugbrooke House will find, in the family vault 
underneath, a fine piece of statuary representing 
the women at the foot of the Cross. In front are 
placed candelabra which, when lighted, shew the 
inscriptions on the tablets ranging round the quiet 
burying-place. The most conspicuous is that 
which a recent Lord Clifford erected to the memory 
of his children, two of whom died in infancy. 

One of the most interesting of all the effigies to 
be found in Devonshire, however, and one which 
is at the same time of very early date, is that of 
Sir Stephen de Haccombe, in the unique church 
of Haccombe, near Newton Abbot. It dates from 
the reign of Edward I., and is associated with "a 
high tomb which probably commemorates the 
Courtenay owners Hugh, and Philippa his wife," 
together with a splendid series of brasses relating 
to the Carews. The earliest of these dates from 
1469, and represents Sir Nicholas with time-worn 
features appearing from under the lifted visor of 
his salade. The student of arms and armour will 
know how much Boutell and other writers were 
indebted to such monumental records for the 


correct and complete history of that branch of 
military science. 

A writer in the Antiquary some years ago tells 
us that somewhere in the sixties he journeyed all 
through central and south Devon in search of 
brasses, of which he took rubbings, which were 
presented to a friend, and no record kept of their 
origin or whereabouts. He was anxious that 
someone should undertake the work again ; since 
in these days of vandalism they might soon be 
beyond recovery. Fortunately, a better spirit has 
since then begun to work, and there is little danger 
to-day of any really valuable relic of the past being 
sacrilegiously destroyed. The antiquary will find 
in the church at Stoke Fleming, near Dartmouth, 
some of the oldest brasses in the county. One, 
of date 1361, is to John Corp, and another, twenty 
years later, to one Elyenore, who is supposed to 
be another member of the Corp family. Dart- 
mouth itself contains the brasses of Sir John 
Hawley and his two wives (1403). They are 
found in the fine cruciform church of St. Saviour, 
consecrated by Bishop Brantingham, Sir John 
being represented in armour. He was a man of 
such unwonted success as a merchant that it was 


" Blow the wind high, blow the wind low, 
It bloweth aye fair to Hawley's Hoe." 

Seven times mayor, he represented Dartmouth in 
Parliament during the greater part of the reign of 
Henry IV. The next in point of time is that of 
Sir Philip Courtenay, dated 1409. 

Yealmpton contains one of the finest specimens 
of monumental brasses in the county. It com- 
memorates Sir John Crocker, of Lyneham, cup- 
bearer of Edward IV., who represented one of 
the oldest families in Devonshire, according to the 
well-known distich 

"Crocker, Cruwys and Coplestone, 
When the Conqueror came were found at home." 

In Coleridge Church is the figure of John Evans, 
as an armed knight, which is worth inspection. 
He died in 1514. The brass of Dame Elizabeth 
de Bigbury, powdered with scrolls, and bearing 
the words" I HU MERCY LADY HELPE," 
is still preserved in the church at Bigbury, and 
dates from the fifteenth century. The church 
itself is dedicated to St. Lawrence, and contains, 
besides the brass, a well-carved pulpit, once the 
property of Ashburton, and an old font. The 
Strachleigh brass is one of the features of Erming- 
ton Church, another being the original altar, 


enclosed by a balustrade, and set table-wise, as 
required at the Reformation, so that the people 
might have it fully in view. 

Coming down to the sixteenth century we find 
a brass to u John and Jane Greenway (1529) on 
the floor of their fine chapel at Tiverton the 
merchant with his furred robe, his purse, and ink- 
horn, the lady with her chatelaine and pomander 
ball," articles of dress and ornament with which 
the present age has little acquaintance. In the 
church at Morthoe, some distance from Ilfracombe, 
is a curious old tomb which Camden attributed 
to William de Tracy, one of the murderers of 
Thomas a Becket. Two sufficient reasons exist, 
however, for disputing this conclusion. In the 
first place the figure is represented as holding a 
chalice in the right hand, a tolerably clear indica- 
tion that a priest is intended. In the next place 
the memorial is a brass. Now, since the murder 
of Becket took place before the close of the twelfth 
century the 2Qth December, 1170 and we have 
no brasses in Devonshire which can be with 
certainty assigned to an earlier date than the 
fourteenth century, it is evident that Camden's 
theory must be given up. Two brasses of later 
date may be noticed. In Hartland Abbey Church, 


dedicated to St. Nectan, together with a Norman 
font of unusual design, a carved pulpit of black 
oak, and a superb screen, we find an old stone in 
the pavement dated 1055 (ten years before the 
Conquest, if the figures be genuine), a monument 
erected in 1610 to the right of the East window, 
and a brass to Anne Abbott, 161 1. The other is 
of special interest as having been erected to the 
memory of Flavel, the famous Puritan divine and 
preacher, who died in 1691. The Corporation of 
Dartmouth ordered its removal from St. Saviour's 
Church in 1709, and it may now be seen with its 
curious inscription in the Independent Chapel of 
that town. 

Without multiplying illustrations, I may fitly 
close this brief study by quoting a few interesting- 
sentences from the able article on Devonshire 
which the late Mr. King supplied to the 
Quarterly Review, of April, 1859, and reprinted 
in his valuable " Sketches and Studies": u In 
Crediton Church [where King himself now lies] 
is an effigy, supposed to be that of Sir John 
Sully, a venerable warrior, who was present at 
the fight of Halidon Hill, at the siege of Berwick, 
at the Battles of Cressy, Najara, and Poictiers, 
and who, at the age of 105, gave his evidence on 


what is known to heralds as the " Scrope and 
Grosvenor Controversy." Altar-tombs and 
effigies, however, are not so numerous in Devon- 
shire as brasses, of which, although they have 
not escaped the usual fate of such memorials, 
many of them, perhaps the finest having been 
either removed or destroyed, a sufficient number 
remain, ranging from the fourteenth to the 
seventeenth centuries, to afford a series of very 
high value and interest. There are none indeed 
which can rival the best of those in the Eastern 
and Southern counties, where French and Flemish 
artists were frequently employed ; but the work 
of those in Devonshire is generally good, their 
details graceful, and with some few exceptions, 
they maintain their position as works of art till 
the end of the sixteenth century." 

After supplying sundry illustrations, all of 
which have been included in the foregoing list 
he adds that these, together with that of " Thomas 
Williams (1566), in Harford Church, who died, 
Speaker of the House of Commons, and who, 
as we are startled at learning from the inscription 
at his head, 

" Now in heaven with mighty Jove doth raine," 
sufficiently prove that there is no want of variety 


among the Devonshire specimens. Armour and 
civilian costume, the changeful fashions of ladies' 
robes, and the still more surprising vagaries of 
their head-dresses heart-shaped, horned, butter- 
fly-shaped, diamond-shaped may be duly studied 
in these enduring pages ; which prove to us, in 
conjunction with the statelier recumbent effigies, 
that the county was, from a very earlier period, 
covered by a numerous body of small proprietors 
of gentle descent, and entitled to bear arms, such 
as still forms one of its characteristic features. The 
constant changes and fluctuations of these families 
and their lands are not less distinctly indicated. 
" Hunc mei, nunc hujus, post mortem nescio cujus.' 

Churchwardens' Hccounts an& Ipansb 

THIS mine of antiquarian wealth has hitherto 
been but scantily worked in comparison 
with the immense amount of material which yet 
remains unpublished and unexplored in Devon- 
shire. I shall not attempt to cover anything 
like the whole county, but shall content myself 
with giving some typical specimens of the kind of 
information which may be obtained from this 
invaluable source. It may be well to commence 
with a few notes of a historical and chronological 
character. I have stated elsewhere that the 
earliest extant Bishops' Register for the See of 
Exeter dates from the time of Bronescombe, who 
was in the bishopstool from 1258 to 1280. 
Exeter, indeed, as Mr. Worth reminds us, is rich 
in the matter of local records. "At the fine old 
Guildhall in the High Street, which dates from 
1466, are the municipal archives, extending back 
to the thirteenth century, arranged and calendared 
by Mr. Stuart Moore, who did the same for the 


muniments of the Dean and Chapter. Among 
the chief treasures of the latter the chiefest is the 
volume kown as the * Exon Domesday ;' but there 
are still several relics of the library given by 
Leofric to his minster, though his Missal and 
several other works have found their way to 
the Bodleian," despite the curse which was to fall 
upon him who should remove them from Exeter 
a curse which reminds us of that which should 
rest on the would be disturber of Shakspere's 

The student is fortunate in having, among 
other things, a most excellent series of papers 
relating to St. Petrock's Parish, in the Cathedral 
city, ably digested and annotated by an admirable 
editor in the person of Mr. Dymond. They 
include "a series of churchwardens' accounts 
believed to be unrivalled for antiquity and 
continuity. For the 165 years extending from 
1425 to 1590 there are but few lapses, and these 
usually but for a single year." Then half-a- 
century before they cease there is an unbroken 
overlapping of records owing to the fact that the 
" registers of christenings, weddings, and burials, 
are continuous from the year 1538, when Thomas 
Cromwell issued the first order for keeping 


records of these events." Further we have the 
records of the Feoffees, the oldest document 
among which was one of the year 1270, of which 
a copy was made on parchment, perhaps by the 
historian Hoker in the reign of Elizabeth. 

Next in interest and value to the foregoing, 
perhaps, is the Transcript of the Parish Expend- 
iture of Milton Abbot, for the year 1588, first 
published at the beginning of this century, and 
re-edited with valuable notes and comments in 1 879 
by no less able an authority than Mr. Pengelly. 
The Register of Births and Deaths for this parish 
dates from 1653. Without going further into 
detail it will be seen that, with such aids as the 
foregoing, and the many reprints of, or excerpts 
from, ancient registers, accounts, and records 
which are to be found in almost every volume 
dealing with matters of an archaeological or 
antiquarian nature, the student has a perfect 
treasure-house of invaluable material at his 
disposal, and only needs patience, discretion, and 
a ready pen to enable him to compile a useful and 
entertaining chapter. 

What a flood of light do they throw upon 
old-time usages and customs ! And how dense 
do they make our ignorance of the past appear 


from time to time, as for example when they 
speak of "gayle money" and ''finding of sheepe," 
or "Peter's farthynges " and " the fifty dole." 
It is by means of such records as these that we 
are able to get behind such interesting problems, 
for example, as the poor law, the military system, 
the methods adopted for punishing offenders, or 
of raising a church rate. Through them also are 
we able to trace to their source some of the few 
peculiar customs still observed in out-of-the-way 
places, the origin and meaning of which would 
otherwise be obscure. Specially valuable are 
some of these records for the clear light they 
throw upon the pre- Reformation church and its 
peculiar usages. Let us look a little more closely 
at a few typical instances. 


"As offences against the criminal or commercial 
laws were dealt with by the municipal authorities, 
we meet with no mention in these accounts of the 
pillory, stocks, or other instruments of punish- 
ment," says Mr. Dymond, when dealing with the 
records of St. Petrock's Parish, Exeter. Here 
we see at once that a difference existed in 
Devonshire between town and country life and 


law. For in the village records we read under 
date 1588 that there was paid to Wm. Byrch a 
man who may have received his surname from his 
honourable office as bearer of the rod " for 
makinge up of the cuckinge-stole, and for 
mending the pillory, vd." The Cucking or 
Ducking-stool needs no description, since every 
book dealing with old-time punishments has made 
us familiar with its appearance and use. A few 
illustrations of its employment in Devonshire in 
the past may, however, be adduced in illustration 
of the foregoing quotation. Near Membury, 
for example, where was formerly a British Camp, 
we find a bridge over the river Axe, now known 
as the Stonybridge. Formerly it was called 
Ducking-stool bridge from its having been the 
scene of numerous exciting episodes in the lives 
of the village scolds. On the last occasion of its 
use, however, so say the gossips, the tables were 
turned, and the scold was a male. A man by the 
name of Butcher having endeavoured to convince 
his wife against her will by the use of the rod, 
was set upon by the indignant females of the 
place, who successfully cooled his courage by 
giving him a dip in the river. 

Similarly as you glide softly down the beautiful 


Dart your attention will be drawn, in the 
neighbourhood of Dittisham, to a huge boulder 
locally known as the Anchor or Scold Rock. 
Hither, we are told, the noble men of the adjoining 
village led their unruly wives when they required 
them to do penance, and if we may judge from 
the old prints which are sometimes to be met with 
representing such events, the pleasure which both 
husbands and onlookers derived from the pastime 
was intense. 

The right to erect and use the pillory and other 
modes of punishment was lodged in different 
hands. For example, we find that about the 
middle of the fifteenth century one James Derne- 
ford, lord of the manor of East Stonehouse, set up 
a pillory and tumbrel in his manor, and held a 
court of frankpledge there. Evidently, then, the 
lord of the manor enjoyed this right. He had, 
however, to exercise it with due caution, for he 
might find himself infringing the rights and 
privileges of others. The monks sometimes had 
a voice in the matter, and in the present instance, 
the Abbot of Buckland, acting in his capacity as 
lord of the Hundred of Roborough, cited him for 
interfering with the rights of the spiritual overseer. 
The case was decided in favour of the Abbot, and 



it was thereupon ordered that the pillory and 
tumbrel be deposed, destroyed, and removed, and 
that no court should be held by Derneford in 
future to interfere with the action of the Abbot or 
his bailiffs. 

In some instances it would appear that the lord 
of the manor was required to provide and keep 
these instruments in repair at his own expense. 
Thus we are told by an early writer on Devon- 
shire that the manor of Daccombe, which, curiously 
enough, belonged to the Dean and Chapter of 
Canterbury, had the custom of free bench, and 
"the lord was obliged to keep a cucking-stool for 
the use of scolding women." It will thus be seen 
that Devonshire was not behind the rest of the 
world in the matter of taming scolds. 

We learn from these records that the law relating 
to the Wearing of Hats affected this remote part 
of the country, and what is more, that the parish, 
and not the individual offender against the law, 
paid the fine. Are we to infer from this that 
encouragement was given to the parishioners to 
transgress ? Here is the entry for Milton Abbot. 

' To John Cragge for the fyne of wearinge of 
hats this yeare (1588), xii d> " Did the authorities 

pay a penny a month to be free to do as they 


pleased ? And if so, was John Cragge authorized 
to compound with them on these easy terms, and 
so save the dignity of the law, and furnish its 
purse with an easily-gotten gain? From the 
accounts, we learn that John Cragge was not an 
official sent from without, but a man of the parish. 
We have, however, no information on the questions 
which are suggested. We know that an Act was 
passed in 1571 to the following effect : 

" Every person above the age of seven years shall wear 
upon the Sabbath and Holiday (unless in the time of 
their Travels out of their Towns, Hamlets, etc.,) upon 
their head, a cap of Wool, knit, thicked, and dressed 
in England, made within this Realm, and only dressed 
and finished by some of the Trade of Cappers, upon 
Pain to forfeit for every Day not wearing, Three shillings 
and fourpence ; except Maids, Ladies, Gentlewomen, 
Noble Personages ; and every Lad, Knight and Gentle- 
man of twenty Marks land, and their Heirs, and such 
as have born office of worship in any City, Borough, 
Town, Hamlet, or Shire." 

Into the many interesting subjects relating 
to legislation for the furtherance of home in- 
dustries suggested by such references as these 
it is not possible now to enter, though the 
temptation is great. It will suffice to cull from 
other Devonshire records one or two further 
entries by way of substantiating what has already 


been advanced. The Churchwardens' Accounts 
for the parish of Woodbury contain the 
following : 

" Mich 5 1576 to Mich 3 1577. Paid to the 
Commissioners for wearing of hattes, I2s," which, 
we presume, is a brief way of saying " for non- 
observance of the law relating thereto " though 
our ignorance of the usage makes it very difficult 
to construe the meaning. Again we read : 

" Mich 8 1577 to Mich 5 1578. To Gregory 
Stokes, as concerning hattes, i8d." The in- 
equality of the amounts, and the fact that 35. 4d. 
per diem was to be the fine, makes the subject 
intensely curious, and shews us how little effect 
such legislation really had upon the people. 


An Epitaph quoted elsewhere suggests that 
the price paid for burial depended upon the 
situation " The further in the more you pay !" 
The following records throw some light on the 
subject of interments and the usage respecting 
fees. The churchwardens receive " for the grave 
of Alice Whytbourne, decessid, late the wyfe 
of Robert Whytbourne, iij 5 - iiij d -, of Philip 
Egbeare, for the grave of Johan Egbeare, his 


late wyfe, decessid, iij s - iiij d - " at Milton Abbot ; 
while at Ashburton similarly is paid " vi s - viij d for 
the burial of John Dolbear senr., and Johanna 
his wyfe." Here also we find under date 1529-30 
an entry for " x s for burials of several persons 
in the church." The accounts show that it is 
not ten shillings for each several or separate 
interment, so we may assume that there were 
three interments at the usual fee of three and 
fourpence. But a few years later we find that 
there is received from Robert Pridyeux for the 
burial of his son, vi s> viij d - a double fee, suggest- 
ing that he was ''further in," whereas the entry 
" xi s for burial of Elizabeth Knoll and 3 others " 
in 1574 suggests that one or other of them had 
to be content with a shilling seat or sepulchre. 

Very valuable as I have said, are some of these 
documents, for the light they throw on Church 
usages in the days which proceeded the Re- 
formation. Take, for example, a few items from 
a Church Inventory made in the days of the 
famous Myles Coverdale. It contains the follow- 
ing among other entries : 

Item j sute of crymsyn velvet w' thappurtenances and j 

cope of y e same. 
Item j sute of white damask w l thappurtances, 


Item j olde cope of new silk. 

Item j pall of silk dornyx. 

Item ij alta clothes j of playne lynne y e o' r of diaper. 

Item ij quissions j of purple velvet y e o' r of check. 

Item j fayre pall of blak velvet w l a rood-crosse. 

Item j fount cloth of silk. 

Item iiij towels j of diaper, iij of playne lynne. 

Item j old pall y r lieth on y e table," &c. 

What essays your church antiquary and historian 
could write on such entries as these. But if the 
vestments and draperies are interesting, with their 
silk, damask, and diaper, in blew, blak, crymsyn, 
and purple, much more so are the goods and 
ornaments made of other materials such as silver 
and gold. Among these, St. Petrock's Church, 
Exeter, possessed in the fifteenth century 

" In primis A box of gold with a berell to bere the Sacrament. 
Item A cross of silver ygylt w* Mary and John w l a socket 

of the same. 

Item iiij chalys ygylt ; ij chalys part gylt. 
Item iiij cruetts of silver part gylt. 
[tern A cence part gylt. 
Item A ship of silver part gylt with ij sponys of silver," 

and the like. 

When we read that a royal patron of the church 
in former times showed his loyalty and affection 
by presenting a silver or golden vessel or ship to 
the sanctuary, we must understand, not a full- 


rigged man-of-war, but a representation of a ship 
for use in the ritual. Into such ships "of silver 
part ygilt" or "parcell gilt," as later records have 
it, the frankincense was placed, while the cruetts 
were for holding the water and wine for the 
Holy Communion. 

Among our Devonshire churches we do not 
find to-day many traces of the old hour-glass 
attached to the pulpit. At Pilton, a short distance 
from Barnstaple, the old pulpit was formerly 
adorned with a stand for the hour-glass in the 
shape of a man's arm. We have evidence of the 
existence of this curious piece of church furniture 
elsewhere, however, in the accounts. Thus, in 
1616, eighteenpence was paid " To Garratt the 
joiner for a new case for the hour-glass " of a 
city church, while in 1648, eightpence was paid 
"for a half-hour glass." Surely a change was 
even then beginning to manifest itself, when the 
length of a discourse must be curtailed by one 
half. Had the people already itching ears, or 
were the preachers dry ? 

The Devonian was equal to the rest of the 
country in the matter of church decorations, and 
would pay annually " For roasemary and baye to 
be put aboute the church at Christide and Easter, 


ijs.," or " For bayes and flowers in the church, 
ijs.," or " Flowers and herbs for the church, js." 

If the accounts are faithful to the loyal, they are 
not less faithful to the vandal and iconoclast. 
We read with a sigh that fifteenpence should be 
thrown away on the " washyng awaye of images 
and for whyt lymyng of the same," for we know 
that many a precious fresco and painting was thus 
obliterated, to our present and perpetual loss. 
We can hardly endorse the expressions of a recent 
writer on art who, referring to the Reformation, 
says that the loss of the illustrations and illumina- 
tions which adorned the church walls and missals 
was but a trifling matter. They were far from 
being perfect as works of art, but as links in the 
chain of history they were invaluable. 

In many of our old parish churches may still be 
found the oaken chests which Thomas Cromwell 
ordered each parish to find in 1538, for the safe 
custody of the registers of weddings, baptisms, and 
burials. These were the predecessors of the iron 
chest, and coffer with three locks and keys which 
were required by an act of George III., and are 
often alluded to in old deeds. 

Among the church goods will be found: 

" Item : A creyn casket for the evydences of 


the church lokkyd wt ij lokkys," while for making 
" a chest and genys and lache " we find the modest 
sum of 35. 4d. Two locks were required so that 
the safe custody of the documents might be shared 
by the incumbent and churchwardens. The older 
and more massive chests which we often find in 
parish churches, however, are frequently secured 
by a set of three locks, while their timbers bristle 
all over with iron bands and nails. 

We here get a clue to the fees for, and the indis- 
pensable custom of consecrating church goods. 
Thus in 1511 the sum of 4d. is paid for dedicating 
a chalice. The amount is so small that we presume 
it would be carried to the Palace for the purpose, 
as we can scarcely think a high dignitary of the 
church would journey to the sanctuary, however 
near at hand it might be, and conduct a consecration 
service for so small a sum. The following entry 
in this connection is curious. " P' altacoe' die 
didicacois ecclie, iijs. iiijd." The fee is orthodox, 
but what of the ceremony ? When his lordship 
visited the church for the purpose of dedicating 
the bells he received the sum of xiijs. iiijd., an 
amount which suggests four bells at the orthodox 
iijs. iiijd. apiece. 

How curious it is to find among the accounts of 


the Haywarden the entry, " Receyvyd in money 
getheryd about the parish for to buy breade and 
wyne for the Holy Communion, vi s x d ." It is well 
known that in former times the partaking of the 
Sacrament was not optional, but compulsory, and 
we find that even when this sum had been collected 
there was a considerable deficit, for in the year's 
expenses we read that there was "paide for bread 
and wyne for the Holy Communion this yere xiiijs. 
viijd." The most curious part of the business, 
however, is the fact that the money passed through 
the hands of such an official as the Haywarden. 


The year which was rendered memorable by the 
arrival of the Spanish Armada is marked by a 
considerable flutter among the villages of Devon, 
and we read that in one place a sum of v s was 
spent on "scouringe of the parish harnis," while 
two shillings went "for a coppye of the mouster- 
booke, containing a list of men for fighting, and 
ijl. xviijs. viijd. for trayninge the souldiers," 
together with other kindred items. Helmets, 
swords and other " harnis " had been neglected, 
and the soldiers had allowed themselves to get as 
rusty as their arms. Hence the need for this 


outlay. Thus we find abundant variety in the 
information supplied, and this not limited either 
to subjects of a legal, parochial, or ecclesiastical 

Among Judas candles and hearses, font tapers 
and autercloths, springles and buckets for holy 
water, thuribles and censers, rood lofts and grad- 
ales, sepulchres and organs, clocks and chimes, 
one knows not where to begin, or where to end. 
Information respecting these, and a hundred other 
subjects of the deepest interest to the antiquary, 
are to be found among our records, a few of which 
will receive elucidation in another connexion. 
For the rest we must refer the reader to the various 
volumes devoted to Devonshire Antiquities from 
which our gleanings have been made, assuring 
him that he will find his researches increasingly 
fascinating and profitable the further he delves 
below the surface. If many subjects are easily 
intelligible, others demand patient and wide re- 
search, and there is yet room among these old- 
world sheepskins for a versatile and enthusiastic 
student to roam in search of hints which will 
elucidate some of the problems still connected 
with the parochial and ecclesiastical life of the 

Curious tenures ant> peculiar Grants* 

THE antiquary has always found the study of 
early tenures and grants a pleasing theme. 
It throws much light upon character. The mess 
of pottage is frequently met with even in England, 
and men have sold their birthright as cheaply as 
Esau did. If we have not the literal counterpart 
of that well-known biblical event, we see the same 
principle underlying many of the old grants which 
are to be met with among our early documents ; 
and in some instances the peculiar tenures of 
Norman and Early English times have lingered till 
the present century, or may even be found potent 
to-day. The love of the chase, and the anxiety 
to have a good meal with plenty of sport, shews 
itself again and again in the acts of some of 
our Norman and Plantagenet kings. What kings 
delighted in their lords would be sure to favour, 
and so we shall find example contagious through 
the different ranks down to the lowest. Priest 
follows prince, and is followed by his people ; 
while the knight follows the king, and in turn is 


imitated by the knave. Dr. James Yonge, whose 
autobiography, written towards the end of the 1 7th 
century, contains some very striking comments 
on men and things, tells us that " Paignton was 
anciently a borough town, and, as is said, held her 
charter by a white-pot, which was to be seven 
years making, seven years baking, and seven years 
eating," On this account, says he, Devonshire 
men are known as white-pots ! As white-pot is a 
dish which few have tasted, and fewer still can 
make, we may say that it is a compound of cream, 
sugar, rice, currants, cinnamon, and sundry other 
ingredients, and along with white ale, was formerly 
much indulged in by the Devonshire epicure. 
Now the statement of Yonge rests only on an 
ipse dixit, but it is easy to see the mess of pottage 
in the arrangement, or the underlying principle. 
He who bestows the charter simply barters that 
for seven years consecutively he shall be supplied 
with white-pot. Doubtless the wiseacre foresaw 
that his gastronomic organs would have done full 
justice to white-pot in seven years, and would 
then be ready to turn to white-bait, or some 
other similar delicacy. I see every reason to 
believe that what is regarded as an absurd 
tradition is " founded on facts." 


A similar regard for the appetite affected the 
ancient manor of Chudleigh. Ages ago, as an 
appendage of the See of Exeter, it was under the 
necessity of providing twelve wood-cocks to grace 
the table of my lord bishop on the day of his 
election. Should the birds in question not be 
forthcoming, a fee of twelve pence was required 
in lieu thereof, showing that in those days a 
wood-cock was valued at a penny. Both the 
cock and the penny have since then greatly 
altered in value. The neighbouring town of 
Moreton Hampstead was formerly a royal manor. 
Domesday shews that it had belonged to Harold, 
and received from the hundred of Teignbridge 
the third penny. When it came into the hands of 
Edward I., he granted it to the Earl of Ulster, 
on condition that he provided a sparrow-hawk for 
the king's pleasure. A passage from Cole's MS. 
in the British Museum will throw some light on 
this subject. 

" Farms took their names from the Saxon 
fermian, meaning to feed or yield victuals, as 
Gervasius Tilberiensis says, that until the time of 
King Henry I. the Kings of England used not to 
receive money of their lands, but victuals for the 
provision of the horses, payment of the soldiers, 


and the like. Money was, however, obtained 
from cities and castles, where there was no tillage 
or husbandry. But when the king, being in 
foreign countries, needed ready money towards 
the furniture of the wars, and his subjects and 
farmers complained that they were grievously 
troubled by carriage of victuals into sundry parts 
of the realm far distant from their dwelling houses, 
the king directed commissions to certain discreet 
persons, who, having regard to the value of those 
victuals, should reduce them to reasonable sums 
of money." 

Similar customs to that of paying the third 
penny existed elsewhere. Thus the fourth far- 
thing arising from the Cambridgeshire towns of 
Chesterton and* Grantchester, originally given to 
Ely by the king when he was lord of these towns, 
in order to maintain the Cathedral, used to be paid 
to the castle of Norwich by the name of Ely 
Wardpenny. And in this connexion I am able to 
throw light upon another curious custom. In the 
Milton Abbey accounts for the year 1588, I find 
the entry, " For Peter's farthynges vjd." On which 
the editor of the accounts remarks that there is 
nothing in the accounts to show what was the 
nature of this peculiar payment, or to whom it 


was ultimately handed. A reference is made to 
Notes and Queries, that invaluable storehouse of 
old world lore, and a quotation taken from the 
accounts of Tallaton, in East Devon, as follows : 
"1610. Paid for Peter's Farthings, xd." Mr. 
Ellacombe and others ask, " What was this pay- 
ment? It occurs again, and I have met with the 
same entry in other parish accounts." The 
oracle, however, remained dumb, and so far as I 
am aware no writer on Devonshire has told us 
what ' Peter's farthings ' were. They differed 
from ' Peter's pence,' inasmuch as the latter was a 
payment to Rome, whereas the ' Peter's farthings ' 
were a payment to St. Peter's altar at Exeter, and 
were paid by such parishes as were in some way 
or other under obligation to the Cathedral. 

Again we find that when the tin-mining industry 
was thriving it was found advisable to tax it ; so 
"the tinners were tithed, and each 'spallier,' or 
spade labourer, paid his ' spade penny ' annually." 
I do not find that the priest at Chagford, the centre , 
of the mining enterprise, was directly entitled to a 
payment ; but in Derbyshire the custom of giving 
the vicar every fortieth dish of lead ore raised in 
the parish of Wirksworth has long existed and 
been observed. The "dish" consists of fourteen 


pints, the standard being preserved in the Moot 
Hall, where all mining cases belong to the Wapen- 
take are brought for trial. Under the old 
Stannary laws, the tinners, we are told, enjoyed 
some remarkable privileges. They were allowed 
to dig for tin in any place they chose, no matter 
whose land it might be, without let or hindrance. 
For this right, moreover, they were required 
to pay nothing by way of satisfaction or remun- 

Reverting again to royalty, we find that it was 
frequently the custom to supply the king with a 
certain number of men in time of war as a kind of 
quit rent. Thus we read of Exeter supplying 
Richard with twenty men for twenty days in 
1484, while four years later the same city "had to 
furnish Henry with two hundred soldiers well 
arrayed for service in the Breton Expedition." 
Things wore a more serious face then, than they 
did in the days when the monarch, according to 
Westcote, granted the manor of Withycombe to a 
trusty follower "by the service of finding the 
king two good arrows stuck in an oaten cake, 
whenever he should hunt in Dartmoor." Lucky 
wight ! When the King wants a few days' hunt 
in these modern times the noble lord who entertains 


him may be prepared for an outlay to cover which 
thousands of pounds will be needed. 

I find that in the reign of Richard 1 1. a freeholder 
in Elsworth, Cambridgeshire held one quarter of 
land of William de Conyton " by the rent of one 
pound of commin," or cummin seed ; a tenure 
which is matched in Devonshire. According to 
the statement of an old historian, the manor of 
Lifton, which originally belonged to the Crown, 
was in later years held by the chapel of Berkhamp- 
stead by the annual render of a pound of incense." 
About the year 1232, Thomas Tettburne notifies 
that he and his heirs are bound to render to the 
Chapter of Crediton one pound of wax every year, 
to be paid on the eve of the blessed Nicholas (8th 
May), towards the service of the chapel, which, 
with the assent of the chapter, he has built at I we 
(Yeo). The grantor and his heirs are bound also 
to take part in processions at Crediton four times 
a year, viz., on Christmas Day, Palm Sunday, 
Whit Sunday, and the Day of Preparation (Good 
Friday). Derogation from the grant was to be 
punished by the forfeiture of the chapel." 

The manor of South Molton, we are told, was 
before the Conquest included in the demesne of 
the Crown, which had a good deal of land in 


Devonshire. We find, however, that in the reign 
of Edward I. it had passed into the hands of the 
Earl of Gloucester, by whom it was granted to 
Lord Marty n, by the service of providing a man, 
with a bow and three arrows, to attend the Earl 
when he went to hunt in the vicinity. As the fee 
or service was sometimes irregular, so we find that 
rents were often paid in separate and unequal 
sums. An agreement exists between the chapter 
of the Holy Cross of Crediton and the Chaplain of 
the same, in which the latter is allowed the use of 
a piece of land, on the north side of the church, 
between the churchyard and the bishop's garden, 
on the following terms. Twelve-pence is to be 
annually paid at the Feast of St. Andrew ; 
eight-pence on the day of the Invention of the 
Holy Cross, and eight-pence on the Holy Rood 
Day, or the day when the Exaltation of the Cross 
is celebrated. These dates represent May 3rd, 
September i4th, and November 3Oth. 

Other ecclesiastical tenures were equally 
interesting and suggestive. In the tithing of 
Yewton is an estate bearing the name of Yewe, 
with which we may compare the foregoing I we or 
Yeo. This place is said to have been, formerly, 
held of the bishops belonging to the See of 


Exeter by the Barons of Okehampton on these 
conditions. When the bishop is installed the 
baron shall act as his steward, or servitor, in 
return for which all the vessels in which the bishop 
is served at the first course shall become the 
property of the steward. At the installation of 
Bishop Stapleton, however, in the year 1308 this 
right was claimed by Hugh Courtenay, as lord of 
the manor of Slapton. His fee on this occasion 
included " four silver dishes, two salts, one cup, 
one wine-pot, one spoon, and two basins." Two 
places, named respectively Merton and Potheridge, 
were formerly connected in various ways, and 
this connection comes out in a curious manner. 
It appears that the Rector of Merton was formerly 
entitled to a dinner every Sunday, and the keep 
of his grey mare out of the barton of Potheridge. 
The historians, whom we follow in these matters, 
inform us that the rector was eventually con- 
strained to accept a commutation of ^3 per annum 
in lieu thereof. If the quit was a favourable one 
to the priest he must have had very humble fare 
on Sunday, and his mare not less humble during 
the week. 

The Clyst, a little Devonian stream which 
unites at Topsham with the Exe, has given name 


to several manors and parishes along its banks. 
These include Clyst St. George in which we find 
a small estate whose tenure consisted in " the 
annual tender of an ivory bow." Bicton, also, a 
place of considerable interest between Sidmouth 
and Salterton, supplies us with another illustration 
of curious tenures. I give the account from 
Worth's popular and valuable History of Devon- 

" Bicton is associated with a very peculiar tenure, 
and with an amusing series of historical blunders. 
Soon after the Conquest, Bicton manor was 
granted to one of the Norman followers of 
William a certain W 7 illiam the Porter, whose 
duty it was to keep the door of the gaol, and who 
held Bicton by this service. This tenure con- 
tinued for some seven hundred years, down to the 
year 1787 ; and the early owners of the manor- 
house at different periods took the names Portitor, 
De Porta, De la Porte, and Janitor. From the 
Janitors it came to the La Arbalisters, the Sack- 
villes, and the Coplestones, and by sale to Robert 
Denis, whose heiress Anne carried it to Sir Henry 
Rolle, of Stevenstone, from whom it descended to 
the late Lord Rolle. It was under the present 
family that the ancient tenure came to an end. 


It had lasted long enough to float a marvellous 
series of traditons, over which nearly every 
historical writer in the county has tripped based 
upon the idea that where the tenure was, there the 
gaol must have been also ! Thus it is gravely said 
that the county gaol was first at Harpford, and 
then at Bicton, before it was removed to Exeter. 
Westcote states that Henry I., who simply con- 
firmed to John Janitor the keeping of the gate of 
Exeter Castle and gaol, removed the gaol to the 
city ; and the Lysonses aver that it was moved 
from Bicton to Exeter for greater security in 1518. 
Proof, however, is quite clear to the contrary. 
Mr. P. O. Hutchinson discovered, in the 'Hundred 
Rolls' of Edward I., the statement that Bicton was 
held in sergeantry by the service of keeping 
1 Exeter Gaol ; ' and another entry to the same 
purport in the ' Testa de Neville.' >: A full account 
may be found in the Transactions of the Devon- 
shire Association. 

A grant in the shape of a small annuity paid to 
the vicar of the old church of Pinhoe near Exeter 
is associated by tradition with a piece of clerical 
bravery in the days of yore. On one occasion, so 
it is said, when the supply of ammunition fell short, 
during an encounter between the English and 


some hostile invader, "the mass priest of that 
place, for his skill and daring in procuring a supply 
of arrows," was granted a reward which was 
continued to his successors in office. So again 
" Floyer Hayes, for many centuries the seat of 
the Floyers, was held under the Earl of Devon, 
by the service of waiting paramount whenever he 
should come into Exe Island : the tenant being 
seemingly appareled with a napkin about his neck 
or on his shoulders, and having a pitcher of wine 
and a silver cup in his hand, whereof to offer his 
lord to drink." Similar tenures are not infrequent. 
Before the Conquest, Molland was a part of 
Harold's domain, and he was naturally succeeded 
by William as Lord of the manor. Shortly after- 
wards it passed from the Crown to a family named 
Bottreaux, evidently Norman. The manor then 
claimed the right to a third of the pasture on the 
moors adjoining, together with the third penny 
of the hundreds of North Molton, Braunton, and 
Bampton. In like manner the people of Great 
Torrington enjoy peculiar rights over the common 
lands abutting on the town. These privileges are 
said to date from the days of Richard I., and 
include the right of unstinted common pasturage. 
It was also an ancient custom here to remove the 


gates of certain fields annually as soon as harvest 
was gathered in, and stock the land with the cattle 
which had during the summer season been enjoying 
the run of the open common. When the time for 
the next year's tillage arrived the cattle were 
again removed from the fields to the common. 
This plan continued till near the middle of the 
present century ; then in 1835 it was modified by 
an agreement, in which the occupiers consent to 
pay the commoners 'quiet possession rents,' while 
they in their turn consent to allow the fields to be 
cultivated by the occupiers in any way they may 
think proper. 

The custom of free bench existed of yore at 
Torre Mohun the parent of the modern Tor- 
quay. By this custom a woman had free right to a 
copyhold independent of the will of her husband. 
On acceding to the estate she became a tenant of 
the manor, and was then included among the 
benchers. In case of incontinence she forfeited 
her right, which could, however, be recovered on 
certain specified conditions. And here we are re- 
minded that the neighbouring town of Brixham also 
had a curious tenure. After the manor had passed 
through sundry hands it was divided into parts. 
That portion which came by right to the Gilberts 


was purchased by some fishermen who thus be- 
came lords of the manor. Their shares having 
been again and again subdivided among the 
fisher-folk, who are commonly known as the 'quay 
lords/ and among whom are some ' ladies' enjoying 
the same rights, it now happens that Brixham has 
more 'lords and ladies of the manor' than any 
other towns in England. 

Without attempting to exhaust this curious 
subject of tenures and grants I may refer to one or 
two other instances which have a local value. 
Everyone versed in the history of Kent has heard 
much of its Gavelkind. Now while it is clear 
from an act procured by the Mayor and Chamber 
of Exeter in 1581 that this peculiar tenure had 
prevailed in relation to much of the city land, we 
find that Devonshire had another form of tenure 
which is practically peculiar to that county. It is 
the much-disputed Venville, concerning which so 
much has been written that we cannot see the 
trees for the wood. " Venville," says one is "a 
word signifying by-dwellings, or habitations in 
parishes abutting on Dartmoor, which paid 
annually for their cattle, when trespassing within 
the forest bounds, fines villamtm or village fines, 
thence corrupted into Jin vill or Venville." Mrs. 


Bray, however, who was well versed in everything 
relating to Dartmoor says "there is likewise an 
old custom, commonly referred to as the * Fenwell 
rights,' which supports the truth of the assertion 
respecting the (former existence here of) wolves : 
since the ' Venwell rights,' as the peasantry call 
them, are nothing less than a right claimed by the 
inhabitants of a certain district, of pasturage and 
turf from the fens free of all cost : a privilege 
handed down to them through many generations, 
as a reward for services done by their ancestors in 
destroying the wolves, which, in early times, so 
much infested the forest of Dartmoor." Thus, 
while the first writer derives the word Venville 
from fines, Mrs. Bray derives it from fens, and 
leaves the final syllable to scramble out as best it 
may. Mr. Worth now comes to the rescue and 
says that " A peculiar right of commonage con- 
tinues (on Dartmoor), known as Venville tenure 
which is accompanied also by feudal service- 
enjoyed by residents in the parishes skirting the 
moor. And this in all likelihood dates from 
Saxon times and represents the rights of common 
which the Saxon dwellers in the border district 
had enjoyed over the moorland waste, and which, 
maintained after the Conquest, have descended to 



the present day." He then tells us that wang 
means a field in Saxon, and that wangefield is an 
early form of Venville. But does anyone see any 
clue there to the mysterious right? It is simply 
a case of darkening counsel with words. Halli- 
well informs us that the word Venvil occurs in 
an old manuscript setting forth the rights of the 
parish of Meavy, which is quoted in Marshall's 
' Rural Economy of the West of England/ and 
that it means the right of pasturage and fuel. 
Marshall supposes it to be a corruption of fen and 

From this conflicting evidence we turn to the 
study of some historical documents, relating to 
Dartmoor, in the hope and belief that we shall 
there find some light. Now in 1838 a letter was 
addressed to Mr. Pitman Jones, by the Rev. J. H. 
Mason, which contains this passage. "The tenants 
within the east, south, and west quarters [of the 
Forest] hold under copy of Court Roll. They 
drive the drifts within their quarters, and have 
nothing to do with Venville. They put their 
stock at once on the unenclosed parts of the 
Forest, and have a right or turbary ; whereas the 
Venville tenants place their stock on the commons, 
or ought to do so, when they are first put out. 


There being no fence between the commons and 
forest, the cattle will stray therefrom into the 
forest, for which this fine (Finis Villarum) was 
originally paid. This leads us back to the year 
1621, when a report on the Dartmoor Forest was 
drawn up by Auditor Hockmoor, in which the 
following satisfactory statement will be found. 
' There are divers towns abutting upon the Forest 
and within the purlieus thereof, and because their 
cattle did daily estray into the Forest were at a 
certain Fine, which being turned into a rent was 
called ' Finis Villarum,' and those which dwelled 
within those Liberties are called to this day 
Venville Men.'" 

Thus it seems clear that the Saxon word wang, 
and the English fen and field are quite out of 
count in the derivation, and that Venville is a rent 
taking the place of a fine, the men who enjoy the 
rights of the Venville tenure being allowed, on the 
payment of a certain amount, to enjoy rights of 
pasturage in the common and forest of Dartmoor. 
This must close our study of tenures and grants 
though there are numerous others which might 
well have occupied our attention. It is not, how- 
ever, intended to make these sketches exhaustive, 
but typical and suggestive. 

an& Jflower^lore. 

DEVONSHIRE is a very paradise for the 
naturalist. Its ferny combes and flowery 
lanes, its fascinating geological formations and 
extensive flora make it a spot of great attractive- 
ness to all who love to study these pleasing 
subjects. During my residence here in the early 
eighties the state of my health made it imperative 
that I should live much out of doors. I wandered 
about in all directions, and wherever I went, 
plucked the flowers from bank and brae, and 
enquired what they were called. The local 
names were in many cases so novel that I made 
a list of all I could obtain, and in due course 
published a ''Glossary of Devonshire Plant 
Names." While I was engaged in its compilation 
I found that nearly every flower had its legend 
or tradition, and many of the names a popular 
etymology, or other association which linked the 
present to the past. Here I found the nucleus 
for my work on Flowers and Flower- Lore, which 
appeared shortly after I left this flowery paradise. 


In this chapter I shall merely give a hint of 
what may be found stored up in the various 
publications dealing with this extensive and 
delightful subject : and as a mere list of names 
would not prove of interest to the general reader, 
I shall give only such as have a special meaning, 
history or association. Since I commenced my 
study of the subject nearly twenty years ago, 
many works on dialect, plant-names and flower- 
lore have appeared, but the works of Britten, 
Earle, and Prior are invaluable. 

In Devonshire the name Adder's meat is 
applied to several plants producing red berries, 
and popularly supposed to be poisonous. It is a 
fact that several wild fruits and fungi with 
brilliant, smooth, scarlet skins are poisonous, or 
contain a peculiar property which acts upon 
certain animals and birds in a very remarkable 
way. The seeds of the Arum or Cuckoo-pint 
(Arum maculatum) cause fowls to turn giddy as 
if intoxicated, whence in Cumberland the plant is 
called the Hen-drunk. In Sussex all such fruits 
are called Poison-berries. These include the 
fruits of the briony, bitter-sweet, henbane, and 
belladonna. Now the term Adder's meat needs 
explanation, not only because of its interesting 


etymology, but in order to correct a mistaken idea. 
It has been asserted by some writers that most 
of the plants which bear the name of adder as 
adder's tongue, adder's meat, or adder-wort 
appear in spring, when snakes are most generally 
seen. Now my experience, both at home and 
abroad, leads me to believe that snakes show 
themselves more in the hot days of summer and 
autumn than in the spring-time ; while it is certain 
that in the west of England the name of the adder 
is associated with plants which may be found at 
any and every season of the year, even including 
winter itself when snakes are nowhere to be 
seen. The fruit of the briony, for example, 
which, like the fruit of the arum, is known as 
adder's meat, is found on the hedgerows during 
the whole of the winter. We have then to look 
for a more accurate explanation of the matter, 
and we find it in the fact that the name refers to 
the real or supposed poisonous nature of the plant 
on which the fruit is found. Now in the language 
which was spoken by our Saxon ancestors the 
name for poison was attor, and the red fruits 
which were supposed to be poisonous were called 
attor-berries. In Sussex baby language the word 
lingers unaltered till this day. If a little one is 


about to touch anything which is prohibited, the 
mother checks it by the magic word attor, 
pronounced autd. The last syllable has also 
come to be recognised as the polite baby term for 
filth, excreta, and anything that is tabooed or 
unmentionable, the inital letter having been 
dropped, as in several other words, under the 
false impression that it was the indefinite article. 
When, therefore, the meaning of the word attor 
was lost, it was natural to suppose that it alluded 
to the adder, especially as there is a latent 
association in the mind between adders and poison. 
Hence the attor-berry became the adder berry, 
and in time adder's meat and even snake's food. 
Thus the matter can readily be traced from stage 
to stage, while the fact that in North Devon the 
term adder's poison is in use supplies a further 
confirmation of the accuracy of our explanation. 
The term adder's tongue is applied to several 
plants on account of the shape of the leaf. One 
of these, the arrow-head (Sagittaria) is connected 
with the old time folk-medicine. The aged 
matrons assert that a cupful of tea made daily 
of nine leaves of this plant boiled in a pint of 
water is a good strengthening medicine for spring 
and autumn use. No doubt the lucky or 


magic number nine has much to do with its 

The general name for plants useful for medicinal 
purposes in Devonshire is arbs. I was one day 
passing through some fields in the neighbourhood 
of Newton Abbot, when an old lady, who was 
passing while I was examining a wild geranium, 
volunteered the following information. " Us 
calls that arb-rabbit (i.e. Herb-robert). The oal 
people gathers it, an' lays 'en up vor winter, 
to make arb tay." Thus a Devonshire recipe 
against witchcraft, written out in 1823, contains 
these instructions among others. " The paper of 
powder is to be divided in ten parts, and one part 
to be taken every night going to bed in a little 
honey. The paper of arbs is to be burnt, a small 
bit at a time, on a few coals, with a little bay and 
rosemary," and the witch will be powerless ! 

The young people of Devonshire, in common 
with their country cousins elsewhere, have a 
goodly supply of Bachelor buttons. Nearly a 
dozen flowers, wild or cultivated, are known by 
this name. Their folk-lore is amusing, and dates 
from early times. The country swain centuries 
ago would carry a flower in his breast or pocket 
in order that he might divine by its appearance 


what success would follow his gallant and knight- 
like efforts to win the object of his love. There 
seems to be an evident allusion to this custom in 
the words of Shakspeare : 

" What say you to young Master Fenton ? He 
capers, he dances, he has eyes of youth, he writes 
verses, he smells April and May ; he will carry 't : 
'tis in his buttons." " Merry wives," III., ii., 65. 
Then we have Beggar's buttons, a very appropriate 
name for the tenacious flower heads of the burdocks; 
and Billy buttons, because the same burrs are 
stuck by boys down their coat fronts to give 
them the appearance of a page or man in buttons. 
In fact the term 'buttons' is one of frequent 
recurrence in connection with plants whose 
flowers and fruits are suggestive of that article. 
Thus the flowers of the periwinkles are in 
Devonshire regularly known as blue buttons. 

The Fritillary with its curiously chequered 
corolla has some interesting names, the study of 
which shew how easily the popular mind gets 
confused, and how readily it jumps at conclusions 
when words are employed whose meaning is not 
quite clear. In different places the plant is known 
as snake's head lily, dead man's bell, Death bell, 
Lazarus bell, leopard lily, checquered lily, and 


guinea hen. The name Lazarus bell is in use 
around Crediton, whereas leopard lily is in frequent 
use there and elsewhere. In each case the name 
is undoubtedly a corruption. Mr. King has 
shrewdly remarked that Lazarus bell is undoubt- 
edly a modern form of Lazar's bell, the flower 
having been originally so called in the days when 
leprosy was rife in England, and the lazar was 
bound to wear a small bell about his person, to 
give timely notice to the passer-by of his approach. 
The chequered markings on the blossom also 
suggested a connexion with the leper, and the 
term leopard's lily may be taken as a simple and 
perfectly natural corruption of the word leper's lily. 
The change would the more readily be made 
when we recall the fact that the leopard is dis- 
tinguished by spots similar to those on the blossom 
of the fritillary. When a leper hospital was 
attached to nearly every large town, and a leper 
window was provided in many of our village 
churches, the names leper-lily and lazar's bell would 
be perfectly intelligible ; but when leprosy died 
out and was forgotten, the plant names would be 
meaningless, and an effort would be made to 
change them into something which was suggestive 
and meaningfull. 


Among the plant-names of Devonshire we find 
some curious survivals from the languages spoken 
by the various peoples which have from age to age 
inhabited the county. As attor, corrupted to 
adder, reminds us of our Saxon forbears, so Laver 
or Levver recalls the Celts. The term Levver is 
used when speaking of the Iris flags, and any 
sword-bladed plants, and is undoubtedly connected 
with the Gaelic luackair,z.n& the Welsh llafrwynen. 
Similarly the term Becky-leaves, applied to the 
brooklime (Veronica Beccabunga, L.) reminds us 
of the beck, a stream or brook, and the influence 
exerted upon our folk speech by the Teutonic 

Friar's caps is but another form of monk's hood, 
and is a relic of monastic times. The aconite, or 
monkshood, is also known as parson-in-the-pulpit. 
When that epithet is applied to the Arum we at 
once see its appropriateness. As a clergyman once 
remarked to me it is " a manifestly good analogy." 
Probably it was on account of the Aconite being 
formerly known as monk's hood and friar's caps 
that it eventually became associated with the parson. 
Anyone unfamiliar with Devonshire ways and the 
dialect of the county might be excused if on hearing 
of Orgin's Tea he enquired what was meant. 


Orgin is not the name of a famous dealer or grower ; 
it is in reality a Greek word, which has come down 
to us through the latinized form origanum, and is 
used by Spenser when he speaks in the Fairie 
Queen of a bath of " origane and thyme." Orgin's 
broth is a common name for pennyroyal tea, an 
excellent potation for a cold, as Mrs. Bray remarks, 
and much in request on Dartmoor and elsewhere. 
The writer of the Devonshire Courtship remarks, 
" If I was a king, I'd make it treason to drink ort 
but organ tey." 

Some people are very particular about the due 
observance of singular and plural. Whenever a 
word ends in a sibilant, it must be a plural form, 
,and if a singular is unknown it must be invented. 
Hence we find such a word as diocese regarded as 
a plural, and each bishop is therefore expected to 
look after his own diocee. So when a plant was 
called Phlox, it was regarded as a plural flocks 
and now people in the west persist in calling the 
plant a flock. So the orchis flowers are provided 
with a singular, orchey a curious illustration of 

In a county which is pre-eminent for its fairy- 
lore it would be strange indeed if the pixy did not 
in some way link itself on to the plants. Thus we 


find that the toad stool is called pixy-stool, and 
years ago the regular name for the stitchwort around 
Plymouth was Piskie or Pixie. Another name 
for this pretty white flower is White Sunday 
(Stellaria Holostea, L.) which I regard as a 
pleasing allusion to the day when the young 
people appeared in white dresses at church with 
reference to their having put off the world and put 
on Christ. Mrs. Bray once led us to believe that 
the old heathen deity Thor had left his imprint 
behind in the name Thormantle " excellent as a 
medium in fevers." I now think, however, that 
we have here merely a corruption of Tormentil, 
one of the numerous Potentillas. The name 
Potentilla was employed by the old herbalists from 
a feeling that the plant was specially efficacious and 
potent as a dispeller of disease. If, however, we 
cannot claim Thor under his proper name we find 
him in his popular character as the thunder-god. 
The horse daisy (chrysanthemum) is one of the 
few flowers which are associated with the 
thunderer in the West of England, where the 
scarlet poppy, found in all cornfields, is also known 
as thunder-bolt. 

There is poetry in some of the old names of 
plants still in vogue here. Take for example the 


term Snow-drift as applied to the Sweet Alice 
(Alyssum). As I sit here and look out of my 
window upon the mass of blossoms which cover my 
rockery, I feel that no name could be more apt. 
Spider plant is again very suggestive. It is one of 
many names associated with the creeping saxifrage 
(S. sarmentosa L.) ; and anyone who has observed 
the young plants as they hang on their runners 
over the sides of a flower pot will admit the 
justice of this poetic epithet. So Spire is an 
apposite term for the reed mace, and Steeple bells 
for the flower spike of the pyramidal Canterbury 
bells. Perhaps no flower can, however, boast a 
more peculiar, and withal instructive name, than 
the stonecrop, and the figwort. The latter 
(Scrophularia) is called in Devonshire Crowdy- 
kit, a curious reduplication, since each part of the 
compound means a fiddle. The first portion of 
the name " crowdy " is from the Celtic crot, which 
appears in Welsh as " crwth," Gaelic "cruit," and 
occurs in the Romance languages as "rota," or 
"rote." This name for the fiddle alludes to 
its hollow frame, and is connected with the 
Welsh " crowth," which means a protuberance 
or belly. Hence we obtain our English 
surname Crowder or Crowther, literally a fiddler. 


But just as crowd is a representative of the 
Celtic element in our folk-speech, so kit 
represents the Teutonic, and has the same 
meaning. The figwort is so called because when 
two portions of the stem are rubbed together they 
squeak just as a fiddle does when it is scraped 
with the bow. Hence it is sometimes called in 
other parts of the country by the plain English 
name of fiddle-plant, fiddles, or fiddle wood. Now 
the leaves of the stone crop, a plant which grows 
on walls and rocky places, possess the same 
property. Hence, to distinguish the one from the 
other, figwort is called simply crowdy-kit, while 
the stone-crop is crowdy kit o' the wall. The 
name is apparently only known among the old 
fashioned folk, but when I was one day visiting 
an old lady eighty eight years old at Ipplepen she 
both gave me the name and knew how it was to 
be explained. Her family, she informed me, used 
to be very musical, and she could remember the 
time when the fiddle was regularly spoken of as 
the crowdy. 

So much has been written by myself in "Flowers 
and Flower Lore," and by others on the plant- 
lore of Devonshire that it is not desirable to go 
further into the subject here. The foregoing 


samples, taken promiscuously from a vast mass of 
material which I have collected during the past 
twenty years, will serve to show how rich a field 
is here open to the folklorist, the student of 
dialects, and the botanist. 

IMCime ScbooUILife* 

NEITHER in the matter of her schools nor 
her scholars has the Devonshire of the 
past come behind the rest of the larger counties 
of England. She can boast of half-a-dozen public 
schools which have been in existence for some 
centuries, each of which has a by no means 
unworthy history. Our survey would be very 
incomplete if it did not include, a brief halt at the 
doors of these academies. We might with leisure 
and patience learn much at each of them, not 
a little of which has more than passing and local 
interest. Some of the scholars who have here 
plodded through the routine of a dreary academy, 
picking up the rudiments of grammar, mathe- 
matics, and Latin, have in later years shed lustre 
on their alma-mater, their county, and their land. 
In order to avoid any appearance of partiality, 
and with a view to the just distribution of honours, 
I shall turn away for the present from the city, 
and first invite attention to the school established 
in 1547 at Crediton. The Free Grammar School 


of this ancient town owes its rise, and much of its 
later prosperity and progress, to the liberality and 
wisdom of that royal patron of learning, Edward 
Vlth. At the present day the school and the 
church are closely associated. By a peculiar 
arrangement the church, once cathedral, then 
collegiate, is in the hands of a corporation of 
twelve governors or trustees. These twelve 
governors moreover enjoyed the privilege of 
appointing the headmaster of the Grammar 

Old Leland visited Crediton a few years prior 
to the establishment of the school, and amongst 
other things he visited the church. Three 
hundred and fifty years ago he said of it that, 
" the church there now standing hath no manner 
or token of antiquitie." Its Perpendicular body 
would then be comparatively recent, and would 
tend to throw into the shade the Norman remains 
still to be found in the tower, and some other 
features of antiquarian interest, which time has 
emphasized and enhanced in value. Shortly after 
his visit Edward founded the school. The town 
then presented a totally different aspect from 
that of to-day. Its modern appearance is due to 
the terrible ravages of fire. The thatch and 


timber houses of the i6th century have given 
place to others built of materials which are less 
liable to conflagration. No fewer than 460 
houses were devoured by the flames during the 
great fire of 1743, while another serious catas- 
trophe of a like kind befel the place a quarter of 
a century later. 

It is gratifying to learn that even in Leland's 
time the people were sufficiently civilized to wear 
some kind of garb, so that the school was not 
established to teach the boys how to dress. He 
says that there is a market in Crediton, and " the 
town useth clothing, and mostly thereby liveth." 
The establishment of the school in 1547 did not 
prevent the people, two years later, from taking 
part in the notable religious insurrection of 1549, 
when ' The Barns of Crediton ' became the watch- 
word, and the streets were barricaded by the 
rebels. Probably the boys of Crediton Grammar 
School had not as yet experienced the excitement 
and joys associated with a school Mock-out,' and 
had not gained sufficient experience by that whole- 
some pastime to enable them to do much in the 
way of keeping back the assailants. It would, 
nevertheless, be interesting to get a peep at Credi- 
ton School on the memorable Whit Monday, 1549. 


It concerns us more, however, to notice here 
that before the next and final passage of arms in 
which the town was concerned during the Civil 
Wars, a decree was issued in 1624, which directed 
among other things that 20 of the revenues 
should be paid yearly towards the maintenance of 
three poor scholars of the School of Crediton at 
the Universities. These exhibitions, which were 
formerly of the value of twenty nobles yearly, 
have since been considerably augmented. Each 
exhibitioner had 6 135. 4d. per annum for five 
years successively, and on the expiration of that 
term others partook of the advantage. 

In point of age the school at Tavistock is 
perhaps the oldest in the county, it having been 
associated with the famous abbey for a long time 
prior to the dissolution of monastic buildings in 
the reign of Henry VII Ith. The monks of Tavis- 
tock were not altogether the lazy, ease-loving, 
wine-drinking creatures which the monks gener- 
ally have been depicted to be. They had their 
printing press early in the sixteenth century, and 
in 1525 issued the " Consolations of Philosophy." 
The title-page conveys the following information : 
" Emprented in the exempt monastery of Tave- 
stock, in Denshyre. By me, Dan Thomas 


Rychard, Monke of the sayde Monastery. To 
the instant desire of the ryght Worshypful 
esquyer, Mayster Robert Langdon." Let us try 
and picture the ruddy-cheeked boys of Tavistock 
playing around what are now the ruins of a once 
magnificent pile of buildings, or conning their 
lessons under the shadow of its hoary walls. 
Then comes the fatal message Tavistock must 
cease to be a monastery, and the school must 
seek a home elsewhere. The abbey - lands 
together with the school, passed into the hands 
of the Duke of Bedford, in whom they were 
subsequently vested by an Act of Parliament. 
The town has been fortunate in the matter of 
lords of the manor. Thanks to the taste and 
liberality of successive members of the family, 
Tavistock has been constantly cared for by the 
Russells ; and to one of the Dukes of Bedford is 
due the present school-house and residence for 
the master, while a considerable portion of the 
salary of the latter comes from the same purse. 

In 1649, Sir John Glanville, Knight, granted to 
Trustees by indenture, an estate at Brentnor, and 
directed that out of the profits thereof, not less 
than 6 135. 4d. (or 20 nobles) should be paid 
yearly to a poor scholar from the school at 


Tavistock, for his better maintenance at the 
University of Oxford or Cambridge, until he 
should obtain the degree of Master of Arts. 
The profits some years ago amounted to about 
^o per annum. Of this famous Sir John, 
Fuller tells us that he had three sons, sergeants- 
at-law, of whom one gained, one spent, and one 
gave as much as the other two. Tavistock has 
yielded not a few men of note to the county, 
while several have played their part in the 
wider history of the nation. 

The Free Grammar School of Ashburton was 
founded in 1606 by one William Werring, Esq., 
who gave lands for the endowment of the same 
in the third year of the reign of James I. Since 
that time the original endowment has been from 
time to time considerably augmented by other 
benefactors. Thus in 1637 Lawrence Blundell 
gave by his will the sum of ^4 per annum out of 
his lands at Ashburton for the purpose of 
assisting a poor scholar of the parish during four 
years of residence at one of the Universities. 
This benefactor must not be confused with his 
contemporary Peter Blundell, to whom another 
school in the county owed so much of its pros- 
perity, as we shall presently see, Mr, Blundell 


also gave the sum of 6 a year out of the same 
estate to a poor scholar of Ashburton, for his 
maintenance at the Grammar School and at the 
University, should one be found worthy. The 
appointment of this scholar is vested in the heirs 
of Mr. Blundell's executors. There are also two 
scholarships at Exeter College, Oxford, for pupils 
from this school. 

The historians of Ashburton have not failed to 
do justice to the distinguished men who have 
reflected the lustre of their names upon their 
alma mater. It would occupy more space than 
I have at disposal if I were to attempt even the 
briefest biography of the first Lord Ashburton, 
earlier known as John Dunning; of William 
Gifford, orphan, cobbler, Bible clerk, critic, trans- 
lator, and editor of the Quarterly Review from its 
first appearance till within two years of his death ; 
or, of Dr. Ireland, who rose from a butcher's shop 
to the Deanery of Westminster, and like his 
contemporary, school-fellow, and friend, Gifford, 
became a munificent patron of learning. Ireland 
gave ,10,000 for the purpose of establishing a 
professor-ship of Biblical Exegesis at Oxford, 
while the Ireland scholarship which he founded at 
the same University in 1825 is regarded as one 


of the greatest prizes of its kind which Oxford 
has it in her power to bestow. The aspiring 
youth whose early pathway is bestrewn with 
difficulties can have no more valuable incentive to 
industry than that which the roll of the Grammar 
School of this quiet little town in Devonshire 

A Free Grammar School was established in 
Kingsbridge late in the seventeenth century. In 
the year 1670 Thomas Crispin, a merchant of the 
city of Exeter, founded and endowed the school 
which has become one of the chief educational 
forces of this his native town. The first master 
was William Dunscombe, M.A., of King's College, 
Cambridge, and when he had held the post for 
twenty eight years he devised by his will in 1698 
that 10 per annum should be paid to "one, two, 
three, or more such boys, being poor, as the 
estate will permit, and my Executors shall think 
fit, and shall have had their education and 
learning in the said free-school of Kingsbridge 
four or three years at least, and shall from thence 
go to the University of Oxford or Cambridge." 
Lord Langdale's decree in 1847 resulted in an 
order "that an exhibitioner be selected every 
year, and receive ,50 a year for four years, and 


that he must have been five years at the school, 
and not exceed the age of nineteen years at the 
time of election, which takes place on the 25th of 
June in each year. An examiner is appointed by 
the Bishop of Exeter, who is visitor of the school, 
and it is his duty to recommend or not, any 
candidates for the exhibition. A certificate from 
the master is also required. The thirty boys on 
the foundation have a priority of claim, and a 
boy's pecuniary circumstances are generally taken 
into the account." 

We pass next to what has been called the chief 
of the public schools of Devon, the Free 
Grammar School of Tiverton. It was founded at 
the beginning of the seventeenth century by 
Peter Blundell, a native of the town, who, by dint 
of untiring industry, frugality, and shrewd invest- 
ments, amassed a large fortune, and then left the 
whole to be expended on the promotion of the 
most worthy of objects charity and education. 
Blundell was the child of poor parents. Born in 
1523, he spent his early days in his native place 
running errands and waiting upon the carriers 
who plied between the town and city. He 
managed, however, while still a youth, to save a 
little money, and his first stroke of business 



consisted in sending a piece of native cloth to 
London for sale. In course of time he ceased to 
entrust his wares to others, and took them him- 
self to the great metropolis. When he had 
secured sufficient money he established a factory 
for the manufacture of kerseys, and thus built up 
a splendid fortune. In his will he directed his 
executors to purchase a piece of ground in a 
suitable and convenient place and erect thereon a 
schoolhouse and accessories, upon which if needs 
be the sum of ,2,400 might be expended. His 
wish was that one hundred and fifty scholars 
should be the utmost limit, and for the benefit of 
these he directed that ,2,000 should be bestowed 
in the establishment of six scholarships in the 
Universities. The six scholars were to be 
divinity students, elected by the Trustees with 
the advice of the master out of the said school, 
those who are aptest in learning, and least able to 
maintain themselves in preparing for the work of 
the ministry to have the first consideration. The 
Lord Chief Justice having been authorized to 
carry out the settlement of the scholarships, two 
were in due course founded in Balliol College, 
Oxford, while the other four went to Sidney 
Sussex College, Cambridge. This, was C}UQ to 


the fact that Emmanuel College declined to 
accept the two which had been allocated to it. 

The funds left by Blundell were not yet ex- 
hausted, and when the school and scholarships had 
been fairly established it was agreed, in 1616, 
that ,1,400 be paid by the trustees to the feoffees 
of Sidney Sussex College for the purchase of 
property in Lincolnshire. The proceeds were to 
be devoted by the College authorities to the 
maintenance of two fellows and two scholars (in 
the place of the four scholars already allocated 
to the College), to be called " The fellows and 
scholars of Mr. Peter Blundell." Provision was 
made for the expulsion of any student who proved 
unworthy, and it is sad to record that on " April 
1 5th, 1669, William Butler, A.B., of the second year, 
and of Mr. Blundell's foundation, was expelled for 
immorality," it having been already found 
necessary in 1640, to remove one of his scholars, 
after three years' trial, for incompetence. The 
fellowships are tenable for ten years from the date 
of proceeding Master of Arts. 

In 1678, inspired by the good example of Mr. 
Blundell, and by the advice of his feoffees, Mr. 
John Ham, gentleman, directed his executor to 
bestow ^200 towards the maintenance of a fellow 


and a scholar in Sidney Sussex College, or Balliol, 
to be chosen out of the scholars of Tiverton 
school. A hundred years later, a grocer of Exeter, 
one Benjamin Gilbert, invested ,2,000 in consols, 
the proceeds of which were in due course to be 
paid to the Trustees of the Grammar School 
founded by Mr. Blundell, to be used for the 
benefit of the same at their discretion. The 
school began to reap the benefit of the same 
during the first year of the present century, 1801, 
and in 1802, it was ordered that ^10 per annum 
be paid to each of their two senior scholars at 
Balliol and at Sidney Sussex in addition to their 
present stipend, and that an exhibition be founded, 
to be called the Gilbert Exhibition of the annual 
value of .20. In 1814 a change was made in the 
order, and the whole of the dividends on the 
consols was equally divided between two 
Exhibitioners on Mr. Gilbert's foundation. At 
three per cent, the amount invested yields to 
each a yearly income of 30. 

A further endowment enriched the foundation 
in 1806, when the sum of 700, likewise in three 
per cent, consols, was appropriated by Richard 
Down for the purpose of aiding a suitable scholar 
in his education. The school, thus enriched, 


has not been unworthily represented by her 
alumni. Richard Cosway, R.A., a miniature 
painter, who died in 1821 after having acquired 
a considerable reputation, was the son of a 
former master in this establishment, and if space 
permitted many names might be mentioned in 
the same connection. 

We must, however, leave these pleasant groves 
and academic retreats in the country, to give a 
momentary glance at their rival in the city. The 
Free Grammar School of Exeter did not come 
into existence so soon as some of the others 
whose history we have traced. It was founded 
in 1629, having been preceded by Tavistock, 
Crediton, Ashburton and Tiverton. The deed 
of endowment bears date Febuary 2Oth, 1629, 
being the fifth year of the reign of Charles I. 
In the thirteenth year of his reign the same 
monarch issued letters patent for the settlement 
of the school ; but it is to the liberality of Mr. 
and Miss Walton, Mr. Brough, and others, who 
early smiled upon the scheme for educating the 
youth of Exeter, that the institution owes much 
of its success. In 1745, the Rev. Dr. Stephens, 
Archdeacon of Chester bequeathed the sum of 
,3,000, the interest of which was ultimately to be 


set apart for assisting six exhibitioners at either 
Oxford or Cambridge. The document is a lengthy 
one, but it specified that the youths who should 
benefit by his bounty must have been three years 
in the Grammar School at Exeter, and in order 
that no misunderstanding might arise he adds this 
word of explanation. " I do declare that, by the 
Free School in Exeter, I mean that school which 
stands within the hospital of St. John, founded by 
Hugh Crossinge, Esq., and others, and no other 
school whatsoever ; for I would make the Mayor 
and Chamber electors of my exhibitioners, as 
they are electors of the schoolmaster, and do not 
doubt of their will to perform the said trust, with 
integrity and impartiality, for the advantage of 
the school and the honour of the city." The 
present value of each of the exhibitions is now 
(or recently was) ^40 per annum. From the 
deed just quoted, and from other documents we 
learn that in the 2ist year of James I., i.e. A.D. 
1624, Hugh Crossinge and others had founded 
a charity school in the city, in connection 
with the ancient hospital of St. John the 
Baptist, and that this institution and the new 
Grammar School of 1629 were merged into one. 
Other exhibitions are due to the generosity 


of Mr. Stephens, Mr Vidal, and other bene- 

I cannot close this brief survey without 
mentioning one other fact in connexion with the 
Devonshire educationalists of the past. Among 
the famous bishops which have in former ages 
graced the See, mention is often made of Walter 
Stapledon, who in his day was Lord High 
Treasurer, and held other important posts. He 
was the founder of Stapledon's Inn, at Oxford ; 
a seminary which after a while changed its name 
to that of Exeter College, the title by which it 
is now known. His work was taken up by Bishop 
Stafford, Lord Privy Seal, who completed the 
scheme for founding the College. The noble 
example thus set was emulated by Fox and 
Oldham, who in their turn became the founders 
of Corpus Christi College, and thus inseparable 
linked the name of Devonshire with higher 

Some l& Bisbopstools, Seats, 
anD palaces. 

THE See of Exeter, like many another, has 
seen and survived a series of changes and 
vicissitudes. It was not always territorially the 
same as it is to-day, nor has Exeter been the 
perpetual home of the chief ecclesiastical dignitary 
of the bishopric. It will be my business in the 
following pages to deal with this branch of the 
past history of Devonshire ; and, in so doing, we 
shall visit a few of the spots which have been 
more or less intimately associated with the bishops 
who have ruled here. 

So early as the year 884, or nearly two hundred 
years before the Norman Conquest, we find it 
recorded that Asser, then Bishop of St. David's 
in Wales, was entrusted by King Alfred with the 
oversight of Exeter, together with the pastoral 
care of all the King's possessions in Saxony 
(i.e., Devonshire) and Cornwall, subject to a 
variety of payments in kind. The Welsh Annals 
inform us that St. David died in 60 1. His 
influence was great, and the times were critical. 


Throughout the period which his life covers, viz., 
the last sixty years of the sixth century, the 
conquest of England was in progress. " The 
Kingdom of Wessex had gradually pushed for- 
ward its boundaries ; and between the years 577 
and 584 it advanced to the Severn, thus separating 
the Welsh principalities from the still British 
Damnonia, then comprising Somerset, Devon, 
and Cornwall. The British Church, during this 
time of conquest and of narrowing dominion, 
underwent many changes. It is probable that in 
the later days of the Romans, and for a short 
time afterwards, there was an episcopal see at 
Caerleon on Usk, presiding over the whole 
province of Britannia Secunda, the modern Wales. 
After the English conquests had narrowed the 
British border, the condition of Wales became 
greatly altered. The principalities of Gwynedd, 
of Powys, of Dyfed, and of Gwent arose ; and 
soon after an episcopal see was established in each 
principality, the limits of the diocese and of the 
principality being identical. The ancient see at 
Caerleon became extinct ; and the whole change 
was thus one from Roman to British organisation. 
The four sees thus established were those which 
still exist in Wales Bangor, St. Asaph, St. 


David's, and Llandaff. St. David was himself 
the founder and the first bishop of the see which 
bears his name." So far Mr. King, whose 
knowledge of, and interest in, the See of Exeter 
and its history were deep and accurate. There is 
evidence, as we learn from the same authority, 
that about 589, Constantine, the Prince of Dam- 
nonia, left his kingdom to enter the monastery of 
St. David ; so that from the days of the great 
saint himself Devonshire and South Wales were 
in touch. We do not, therefore, wonder at the 
action of King Alfred. At the same time it is 
easy to see that such an arrangement could not 
long be satisfactory. The Bishop of St. David 
had enough to do at home, and something more 
must be done for Damnonia. Hence in, or about 
909, certainly early in the tenth century, Crediton 
was made the bishopstool. And here a most 
interesting chapter in the early church life of 
Devonshire begins. 

The religion of the Christ had been for some 
seven hundred years undermining the heathenism 
and superstition which existed prior to the 
Roman invasion, and it is possible to trace 
back to a very early date the existence of an 
organised church of Keltic origin and character. 


Down till the time of Ecgberht, whose acces- 
sion to the Saxon throne in 800 gives a new 
turn to the course of history in Wessex, this 
Keltic or British Church had swayed the 
religious life of the West. It then gradually lost 
its influence under pressure from the represent- 
atives of the Roman type of Christianity, and, 
although we find Alfred recognising the successor 
of St. David, we see that a new order of things is 
inevitable. And " in 909 the ecclesiastical order 
of Wessex was made complete." This was done 
by the consecration, in one day, of no fewer than 
seven bishops. One of these was Eadulph, who 
became the first Saxon bishop of Devon. At a 
synod held at Canterbury, a partial rule over 
Cornwall was also assigned to this bishop. Three 
manors, now known as Pawton, Callington, and 
Lawhitton, were given to him, in order that from 
thence he might visit the Cornish race thrice 
yearly presumably taking each place as his seat 
for a brief period once every year for the pur- 
pose of extirpating their errors. 

It should here be borne in mind, what Professor 
Freeman has carefully pointed out, that the tradi- 
tions of the British Isles did not, as in France, 
"connect the bishop with any particular spot. 


He was bishop, not of a city, but of a kingdom or 
tribe, his bishopstool was not necessarily in the 
chief town, and he most commonly took his name 
from the people than from any town." It is to be 
presumed, nevertheless, that the place chosen by 
or for the bishop offered some peculiar advantages, 
and such a claim has been established for Crediton. 
Exeter was certainly, in the tenth century, far in 
advance of Crediton, and its importance would 
naturally have suggested the propriety of making 
it the centre of ecclesiastical government, if 
present-day standards had prevailed. Then it 
was otherwise. Probably some factors in the 
process of choice are unknown to us. Some of 
the motives which led to the establishment of the 
bishopstool at Crediton cannot now be adduced, 
for the simple reason that they were never put on 
record. It is, however, fair to assume that the 
fact of its having been the reputed birthplace of 
the famous Boniface, weighed with the first 
occupant of the See and his advisers. The place 
had a sanctity and charm, which only such personal 
associations can confer. St. Boniface, also known 
by his Saxon name of Wynfrid, was born, we are 
told, in 680. Having been led to embrace the 
Roman, as opposed to the Keltic, form of 


Christianity, he set to work, both to undermine 
the influence of the rival form of religion which 
prevailed in the British Church, as well as to bring 
the heathen under the influence of Romanism. 
Not confining his arduous labours to his own land, 
he became the Apostle of Germany, was made 
Archbishop of Mentz, and became spiritual head 
of the whole German kingdom. He is said to 
have been martyred in 756, in his seventy-sixth 
year, while engaging in the attempt to convert 
the heathen still to be found in Friesland. 

I do not, however, lay stress on this as a 
sufficient reason for the establishing of a See at 
Crediton, or even as one of the more important 
elements. Mr. Freeman asserts that the earliest 
evidence we have, of a documentary character, that 
Wynfrid was born at Crediton goes no further back 
than the fourteenth century, and disputes the exis- 
tence there in the seventh century of an important 
Saxon settlement. His views have been strongly 
opposed by Mr, King, Prebendary Smith, and 
other by no means insignificant authorities, who 
give emphasis to the tradition, which is first 
recorded by Bishop Grandisson in the Legendary 
prepared in 1336 for the use of Exeter Cathedral. 

If there was no important English settlement at 


Crediton in the seventh century, the ton on the 
Greedy was by no means unimportant two 
centuries later. Between 680 and 910 there 
was certainly ample time for the upgrowth of a 
considerable settlement ; a settlement, moreover, 
which was not so liable to disturbance from 
military and commercial, or rapacious causes, as 
was the larger and more accessible rival at Exeter. 
It was tolerably central. Modern methods of loco- 
motion were unknown, so it was not a question of 
express trains and a convenient railway station, 
but a fair road, and ready access to every part of 
the diocese. 

Here then, at Crediton, the first cathedral, 
known as St. Mary's Minster, or the Monasterium 
Sanctce Maria, upreared its modest head. It 
would probably not come up to our idea of what 
a cathedral should be, remarks an able writer, but 
such as it was, it was the centre of the Christian 
Church, and the first bishopstool in Devonshire. 
From the Saxon Chronicle, and from other sources, 
we may gather the names of all the bishops of the 
See, several of whom died and were buried at 
Crediton. These were nine in number, and in- 
cluded ^Ethelgar, who made a pilgrimage to 
Rome "for his pride " which was doubtless in 


this way not a little gratified ; /Elfwold, the pro- 
tege of St. Dunstan ; Sideman, who died while 
attending a council in Oxfordshire, and Lyfing, 
under whom the bishopric of Cornwall was united 
to that of Devon. The two remained wedded 
for a period of nine hundred years, no change 
taking place till a divorce was granted in our 
own days, resulting in the establishment of the See 
of Truro. It was during the time of Leofric, 
ninth Bishop of Devon, that the seat of the 
bishopric was removed from Crediton to Exeter. 
Even then " the manor of Crediton, with a brief 
alienation, continued to belong to the See of 
Exeter, and the bishops retained there a residence 
and park. The palace is now represented simply 
by a buttress, and the park indicated by the name 
of the 'Lord's Meadow.'" Mr. Worth, whom 
we quote, in common with other writers on the 
subject, shews that the chief reason for desiring a 
change was the exposed and defenceless condition 
of the town during the ravages of Danish pirates. 
Such at least was Leofric's plea in addressing the 
Pope on the subject, and requesting his holiness 
to recommend the English sovereign to make the 
transfer, though we may easily believe that the 
growing importance of Exeter was the real reason, 


Pope Leo IX. graciously listened to the argu- 
ments of his suitor ; the King, with equal grace, 
approved the papal nod; and in the year 1050, 
with a king at his right hand, and a queen at his 
left, Leofric was enthroned in the minster of 
St. Mary and St. Peter. From that day till this 
Exeter has remained the head of the see, and 
for upwards of eight hundred years the bishop's 
authority extended over Cornwall as well. 

Of Exeter I must not now write. Its 
story, from the ecclesiastical standpoint, merits 
a chapter by itself, and having thus far made 
the story of the see clear, I may pass on 
to notice a few facts relating to the seats 
and palaces which have from time to time 
been tenanted by the lords spiritual of the 
diocese. Pawton, Callington, and Lawhitton, 
being now in the Cornish see, as well as beyond 
the Devonshire county border, do not concern us. 
We do find, however, that several places within 
the present diocese are linked by name with the 
ruler of the See. "Bishop (says Mr. Worth) is 
the usual prefix identifying episcopal properties," 
and of these we have Bishops Teignton, Bishop 
Cheriton, and Bishops Nympton, with Bishops 
Tawton and Morchard Bishop. Thus the bishops 


claimed five manors or parishes, the monks and 
abbots having each left their distinguishing mark 
upon a similar number. These, with two claimed 
by priors and two by others, make a total of 
nineteen parishes connected by name with the 
Church. But in addition to the five parishes 
bearing the name of Bishop, we find sundry other 
parishes and manors held by them at different 
periods, and it will now be my business to notice 
the more important. 

Foremost among the seats and palaces of 
former bishops of Devonshire must be placed 
Chudleigh. " We first find it an appendage of 
the See of Exeter, saddled with the duty of 
providing twelve woodcocks, or in lieu thereof 
twelve pence, for the bishop's election dinner ; 
and Bishop Stapledon, in 1309, obtained the 
grant of a market. There was an episcopal 
palace, of which a few fragments yet exist, and 
here it was that Bishop Lacy died in 1455. The 
church had been dedicated by Bronescombe in 
1455." These few facts, briefly stated by Mr. 
Worth, are significant of much, and my old friend, 
Miss Jones, of Chudleigh, has elaborated some of 
them to excellent purpose in her little volume 

setting forth the history of the town and district. 



From her we learn that it was optional for the 
bishop to receive from the manor of Chudleigh at 
Christmas either twenty-four woodcocks or twelve 
pence. About thirty years after the transfer of 
the see from Crediton to Exeter the bishop, in 
his visitation, was so attracted by the salubrity 
of the air and the beauty of the vale, that he 
chose the place as one of the sites for his country 
residence. This seems to shew a tendency 
already to the search after pleasure and ease 
which characterized the Norman dignitaries both 
in Church and State. Chudleigh Palace un- 
doubtedly became at once a favourite residence 
of the early bishops. Many of the documents 
which now enrich the ecclesiastical archives of 
Exeter, were signed by the bishops while they 
were enjoying the pleasures of this rural retreat, 
and we have documentary evidence to shew that 
the chapel of St. Michael, attached to the palace, 
was the scene of frequent ordinations and other 
functions. Dr. Oliver shews, by reference to a 
deed, that the lands, park, and manor of Chudleigh 
were appropriated to the See of Exeter between 
the years 1161 and 1184. Bishop Bartholomew 
granted the profits of his woods in Chudleigh to 
the Lazarhouse of St. Mary Magdalene, in Exeter, 


In 1282, the manor of Chudleigh was annexed by 
Bishop Quivil to the cathedral precentorship. In 
1308, the rental of the manor, according to Bishop 
Stapledon's Register, was ij 45. 5^d., and 
about this time a sum of 2os. per annum was paid 
to the See by the Fulling Mill, the trade in woollen 
goods being then in a flourishing condition. It 
was at Chudleigh Palace that Bishop Lacy died 
in 1455, after governing the church for a period 
of thirty-five years. He was interred in his 
cathedral-church at Exeter, but his arms were set 
up in the east wall of the north aisle of Chudleigh 
Church. From his days little interest seems to 
have been taken by the great prelates of the 
Church either in the welfare of this little country 
town, or the attractions of the palace and its 
surroundings. Many of them were either involved 
in difficulties owing to the troublous times, or 
were so much engaged in their attendance on 
royal personages and secular affairs, that little 
time was left them for their more spiritual 

To Bishop Voysey is due the alienation of the 
church lands in this parish. In 1547 he granted 
a lease of the manor, town of Chudleigh, park, 
palace, and other properties, to the Duke of 


Somerset for ninety-nine years ; and whatever 
other effect it may have had, the act seems to 
have brought about the termination of the long 
established Roman Catholic rule there. 

From Chudleigh it is not a far cry to Paignton, 
a place rendered memorable by the traditional 
association therewith of Myles Coverdale. It 
may, I think, be fairly assumed that those who 
throw doubts upon the statement that Coverdale 
once resided here have the best of the argument ; 
but whether or not the great Biblical scholar was 
ever able to find time and opportunity to return 
to the palace of Paignton, certain it is that here 
the bishops had a seat. The manor of Paignton 
had been the property of the See of Exeter before 
the days of the Norman Conquest. Next to 
Crediton it was the most valuable of all its 
belongings at the time when Domesday was 
prepared. At the Survey-taking it was returned 
as f 50 value. It had 56 serfs, 52 villeins, 
40 bordars, 5 swineherds, and a saltern. It 
became a market town in 1294. We have no 
definite information respecting the date when it 
was first selected by the bishops as a place of 
residence, though it has been asserted that about 
1080 it attracted notice, at the time when Chud- 


leigh was fixed upon for the erection of a palace. 
The same bishop as disposed of the sister manor 
of Chudleigh also conveyed this away from the 
church, and as this happened a brief time before 
Coverdale was appointed to the See, there is 
reason to believe that the palace was in the 
possession of a layman, William, Earl of Pem- 

If Coverdale did not reside here it is certain 
that he could not here have been engaged in the 
work of translating the Bible. This is a cherished 
tradition in Paignton, but it cannot be supported 
by satisfactory evidence. Born in Yorkshire, in 
1487, he adopted the faith of the Reformers about 
1530, and four years later the translation was 
dedicated to Henry VIII. This was sixteen 
years before he was raised to the See of Exeter. 
He occupied the See but three years, and though in 
later years he was offered the position again after 
having been deposed, he preferred to decline its 
acceptance. He was deeply engaged during his 
brief term of office in trying to redeem the religious 
life and character of his diocese, and if the palace 
at Paignton had not then been actually disposed of, 
it seems pretty certain that Coverdale never lived 


A mile or two on the other side of Torquay is 
Bishopstowe, where there used to reside occa- 
sionally a former Bishop of Exeter. It is 
immediately above the famous Ansty's Cove, and 
may be known by its Italianesque towers and 
terraces. A few miles away is Bishopsteignton, 
now well-known on account of its famous hydro- 
pathic establishment and delightful air ; formerly, 
as its name denotes, the property of the bishop. 
At Rodway the ruins of the palace and chapel are 
still to be seen, and here the great dignitaries of 
the Church for many years found a favourite 
retreat. Bishop Grandisson is regarded as the 
builder of what was once known as a fair and 
beautiful house, with its convenient and costly 
buildings, and his later day brother, Voysey, had 
the doubtful honour of alienating it. Like many 
another whilom mansion, this building has now 
been absorbed by, or included in, a farm house. 

Bishop's Clyst was formerly an episcopal manor 
also, and here the head of the See had a residence ; 
but it probably passed over, with a score of other 
lordships and manors, in the days of the luxurious 
and wasteful prelate who preceded Coverdale. 
" Until the assertion was questioned by the late 
Dr. Oliver, Bishops Tawton, next Barnstaple, 


was commonly accepted as having been the 
primary seat of the See of Devonshire. It is 
now abundantly clear that Dr. Oliver was justified 
in his scepticism, for later research has shewn 
that the belief rested entirely upon a statement 
made by Hoker, of Exeter, in his catalogue and 
memoirs of the bishops of Exeter down to 1583. 
Therein he states that ' Werstanus was the first 
who fixed the episcopal chair at Bishops Tawton,' 
in the year 905. No earlier writer than Hoker 
assigns a bishop to Bishops Tawton ; such later 
writers as do all follow Hoker ; and while no 
evidence confirmatory of this statement has any- 
where been found, the difficulties in the way of its 
acceptance seem upon critical examination to be 
insuperable. There is, however, no reason to 
doubt (to quote the words of Dr. Oliver) that 
' the manor of Bishops Tawton, with its members, 
Landkey and Swymbridge, formed a part of the 
original endowment of the See,' and was then 
regarded as its most profitable estate. ' Here the 
bishops occasionally resided, as they did at Clyst, 
in Farringdon parish ; at Radway, in Bishops 
Teignton ; at Place, in Chudleigh ; and Paignton.' 
Some small remains of the ancient palace still 
continue." The church here contains some old 


armour, together with memorials of the Chichester 
and Bourchier families. 

Bishops Nympton possesses an attraction for 
the antiquary, both on account of its church, and 
also because its name has an interesting history. 
We are familiar with such place names as Intake 
and Newtake, indicating more or less recent 
enclosures. Here, in Devonshire, we have a 
group of parishes with the term Nymet, or 
Nympton, attached to their names, as Broad 
Nymet, Nymet Tracy, Bishops Nympton, Nymet 
Rowland, and the like. Our Saxon forefathers 
had a verb, niman, or nyman, to take, seize, or 
catch ; whence our word nimble, formerly nimal, 
' ready to catch,' and numb, signifying loss of 
power or sensation through being seized, gripped, 
or held fast. Now these parishes named Nymet 
mark the sites of ancient enclosures from the 
waste, common, or moor, in the days preceding 
the Conquest, when the Saxons were in possession, 
and were gradually subduing the land. The 
church of Bishops Nympton, though itself of the 
ordinary Perpendicular style, has a good tower 
with curious gargoyles, and a peculiar chancel 

It has been affirmed that out of twenty-five 


lordships and manors enjoyed by his predecessors, 
and left for the use of Bishop Voysey, yielding a 
large yearly income, he left but three, and these 
leased out to others ; while of fourteen houses, 
well furnished, and the demesnes well stocked 
with cattle and deer, he left to his successor, 
Coverdale, only one, presumably the Palace at 
Exeter ; and that plundered of its furniture, and 
charged with several annuities. Of the remainder 
of the houses, manors, and lordships, it is not my 
purpose to treat ; enough having been said to shew 
that the See must at one time have been far from 
undesirable, if we have regard to its revenues 
and residences, its beauties and opportunities. 
Like other things, the belongings of prelates and 
the Church have had their ups and downs, and 
even here we are reminded that things are never 
at one stay. 

l& Devonian Jfacts anfc ^fancies. 

LET me endeavour in this connection to 
gather up a few miscellaneous items 
which have an important bearing on Church- 
lore, and other branches of antiquarian research. 
Foremost I will place some notices of 

That leprosy was once a well-known disease in 
this country is a well established fact. Witnesses 
are found in our numerous leper hospitals and 
lazar houses, leper windows, official documents, 
and side allusions in folk-lore and usage. Else- 
where I have drawn attention to the probable 
connection which is to be found between some 
still popular plant names and this disease. Mr. 
King writes with reference to the term Lazarus 
Bell as follows : " This name I have found 
given in the neighbourhood of Crediton to what 
is more generally known as the snake's head lily 
(Fritillaria Meleagris] a somewhat rare native 
plant. Another name for it, which at first seems 
just as unintelligible, is leopard lily. In both 
cases, however, these names are probably cor- 


ruptions. Lazarus bell seems to have been 
originally lazars bell, and the flower must have 
been so called from its likeness to the small bell 
which the ' lazar ' was bound to wear on his 
person, so that its tinkling might give warning 
of his approach. The checked, scaled marking 
of the flower also suggested a connection with the 
leper ; and leopard lily is no doubt to be explained 
as leper s lily. It need hardly be added that these 
names are now quite without understood meaning, 
although when a leper's hospital was attached to 
every large town they would have been intelligible 
enough." The explanation of the second name 
is, we think, fairly open to dispute. When we 
remember the leopard's spots, and call to mind 
the fact that the fritillary is known by such names 
as guinea-hen flower, nutmegs, and chequered lily, 
we may admit that the name is quite unconnected 
with leprosy. On the other hand, such names as 
deadman's bell (the leper being accounted legally 
dead), and deith-bell certainly suggest a con- 
nexion with lepers, and support the interpretation 
of the term Lazarus bell which Mr. King has 

What evidence, it may be asked, have we that 
leprosy formerly existed in Devonshire? If we 


study the history of the churches, and look up 
the dedications, we shall find some help towards 
an answer. Thus at Plympton St. Mary we find 
a church dedicated to the Holy Trinity and St. 
Mary Magdalen. The latter name is suggestive, 
and we find from the old records that it was 
associated with a house or hospital for lepers. 
The same dedication occurs in about a dozen 
parishes, and in more than one of these it is 
definitely associated with a lazar house. It was 
so at Totnes, and also at Exeter, while at Pilton 
the leper hospital was under the protection of St. 
Margaret. We have a curious fact on record 
relating to Exeter. In 1476 one John Orange 
was mayor of that city, and it would seem 
probable that he was the son of a former mayor 
Richard Orange, who had been the chief magis- 
trate twenty-one years before (1455). Izacke, the 
Devonshire chronicler, informs us that he was a 
gentleman of noble parentage, descended from 
the family of Orange, who held possessions in 
Anjou and Mayn. He ended his days as a leper 
in the hospital or almshouse of St. Mary Magdalen, 
and in the chancel of the chapel attached to that 
institution his body was interred. This hospital 
had then been in existence for some centuries, 


and was liberally endowed ; for we learn from 
some twelfth-century deeds that Bishop Bartho- 
lomew granted the proceeds of his timber-lands 
in Chudleigh to the lazar house of St. Mary 
Magdalen, Exeter. 

In two documents dating from the reigns of 
Richard and John we find a list of chapels then 
existing in the city, in addition to the parish 
churches. Among these mention is made of u St. 
Mary Magdalen or the Lepers' Hospital." It 
will be well here to insert a note by Prof. 
Freeman, from his excellent volume on Exeter 
in the Historic Towns' Series : " The large and 
constantly increasing number of directly charitable 
foundations in Exeter form a marked feature in 
the city. And some of them date from these 
times, when the city was, so to speak, in making. 
The bishops, perhaps from the time of Leofric 
[who transferred his stool from Crediton to 
Exeter in 1050], had an almshouse on the site 
of the present Vicars' College , . and in 
1170 a citizen founded the hospital of St. 
Alexius near St. Nicholas' Priory. Both these 
foundations were afterwards merged in the 
Hospital of St. John, by the East Gate, founded 
by Gilbert and John Long about 1225. Another 


early foundation was the Lepers' Hospital of St. 
Mary Magdalen, outside the South Gate, of which 
Bishop Bartholomew was not the founder, but a 
benefactor. He gives it several sources of in- 
come, among others the bark from his wood at 
Chudleigh. The inmates of the hospital were 
strictly forbidden to go into the city. The 
Lepers' Hospital was at first in the patronage 
of the bishops, and St. John's in that of the city, 
afterwards the two were exchanged." 

In the same volume we have a further in- 
structive allusion to this subject : " In Hoker's 
account of the city officers, the duties of the 
Warden of the Magdalen, or Lepers' Hospital, 
are laid down. He is to see that the church, 
houses, and buildings are repaired, and that none 
of its property is leased without the consent of 
the Mayor and Twenty-four. In Hoker's day 
the house still fulfilled its original purpose. The 
inmates are spoken of as ' lazar-people,' and none 
are to be admitted except ' sick persons in the 
disease of the leprosy.' But as that disease died 
out of the country, the Magdalen-house gradually 
came to be an ordinary alms-house, only with a 
preference for scrofulous inmates. . . . The 
foundation of John Gilberd in 1538 witnesses, 


like the Magdalen, to the late prevalence of 
leprosy. His hospital, though under the manage- 
ment of the city, was not in Exeter, but at Kings- 
teignton. A warden is to be chosen from among 
the ' lazar people ' themselves, and it is provided 
that ' such amongst them as should have ability 
to labour should not be in idleness, but should 
assist the rest of the company that should be 
impotent, and also, as their powers would extend, 
should labour in their herb-garden for their own 
sustenance.' ' All this is so thoroughly in har- 
mony with what we know of the disease, and the 
methods adopted for its treatment elsewhere, that 
I do not need to enter into further detail by 
quoting evidence from Totnes, Plympton, Pilton, 
and elsewhere. 

The tourist may be glad to know where he can 
see these interesting links with the past, while the 
church antiquary will be grateful for some notes 
which will enable him to complete his researches 
into a curious, and still somewhat mysterious, 
subject. I shall not here discuss the various 
theories put forward to account for the presence 
of yew trees in graveyards. One of these stands 
in the churchyard at Denbury. In the spring 


of 1876 a branch was torn from its stately trunk 
during a heavy gale, connected with which we 
have a curious record : " The sap was rising 
at the time, and the tree would have bled to death 
but for the doctoring of the village farrier, who 
closed the wound with some composition of a 
strongly styptic property. In his bill, sent in 
to the parish authorities, mixed with various 
items for shoeing horses, etc., appears ' to healing 
the yew-tree, 2s. 6d. ' With such a record in 
the parish books (says Mr. Karkeek, who supplies 
the information), it may be as well to save the 
ingenious speculations of future antiquaries by 
giving the present explanation." Certainly the 
entry would have done credit to fourteenth or 
fifteenth century registers, and we have in this 
simple circumstance a vivid sidelight on the rustic 
life of a remote Devonshire village. 

Some years ago the Devonshire Association 
met at Dawlish. In connexion with that event 
I supplied some reports of the proceedings to 
the papers, and specially directed attention to 
the splendid old yew trees in the churchyard at 
Mamhead, which was visited during one of our 
memorable excursions. From the reports of 
others written at the same time I find it recorded 


that u the grand old yew tree in the churchyard 
was duly admired." An enormous yew tree like- 
wise overshadows the church of Shute, a building 
partly in the Decorated and partly in the 
Perpendicular style, in which Sir William Pole, 
the antiquary, is represented in his court dress as 
Master of the Household to Queen Anne. Pass- 
ing on to Exmouth, we take a run to the ruined 
Church of St. John in the Wilderness, at Withy- 
combe, where another noble tree affords a 
welcome shade when one has been for sometime 
walking under a sweltering sky. The yew tree in 
the pretty, retired village of Stokegabriel is said 
to be the second in England for size and age. 

Finally, we may confidently invite the traveller 
to visit Bampton. The church stands at the west 
end of Castle Street, and after inspecting the 
antiquarian attractions of a carved roof and 
screen, and the fragments of early stained glass 
which it contains, we may seat ourselves on the 
stone benches which are built around the two 
aged yew trees, and enjoy the splendid prospect 
there to be gained. We shall be able then to see 
the fine beech trees at the Mount ; and if our 
tastes lie in this direction we may visit Powderham, 

Mamhead, and Berry Pomeroy, then go on to 



Dartmoor, and contrast the wizened oaks of the 
Wistman's Wood with the giants we have 
examined in the parks and preserves on these 

The student of antiquities is ever on the alert 
for what is unique, curious, or unusual. He 
will find in this interesting county many things 
to gratify his taste. Let me refer, for example, 
to the unusually attractive church and parish of 
Haccombe near Newton Abbott. In the absence 
of any information respecting the etymology of 
the name, I venture to compare it with the 
Hautecombeof Aix-la-Chapelle. Haccombe, says 
Mr. Worth, is the most interesting parish in the 
vicinity of Newton, and one of the most singular 
in Devon. In the olden times it was an extra 
parochial chapelry. Sir John L'Ercedekne, who 
surely must have derived his name from the office 
of Arch-deacon, made it an arch-presbytery about 
the year 1341, from which fact it results that 
the rector of Haccombe is still known as an arch- 
priest. Originally there were five others associated 
with the arch-priest, who together made a college 
and lived in community. To-day only the head 
pf the community remains. " AS the seat of an 


arch-priest, Haccombe naturally used to claim 
exemption from the authority of an archdeacon ; 
and Haccombe itself was regarded as beyond the 
jurisdiction of any officers, civil or military, and 
as being free, by royal grant, from any taxes. 
Probably fewer changes as to population have 
taken place here than in any other manor in 
Devon which has developed into a parish. . .. . 
The church dates from the thirteenth century, and 
contains some fine effigies of the Haccombes, 
with brasses of the Carews, and a high tomb 
which probably commemorates the Courtenay 
owners Hugh and Philippa his wife." 

In a work dealing with the history and evolution 
of such curious church usages it would be necessary 
to adduce illustrations from other parts of the 
country and confirmatory evidence ; and this it 
would be easy to do. Here, however, I can only 
draw attention to a few subjects meriting the con- 
sideration of the reader who revels in old-world 
lore, leaving him to take up such as appeal most 
strongly to his particular tastes or opportunities 
for research. 

There is another church in Devonshire whose 
history is somewhat similar in some of its details 
to that of Haccombe, In the neighbourhood of 


Tavistock we find a parish known as Whitchurch. 
In Domesday it is referred to as Wicerce, a name 
which clearly points to the existence of a church 
here in the days which preceded the Norman 
Conquest. About the year 1300 Robert Cham- 
peaux, head of the neighbouring abbey of Tavis- 
tock, made Whitchurch into an archpresbytery, 
with a college of four priests, viz., the rector as 
archpriest and three fellows. I may remind the 
antiquary of Hartington, in Derbyshire, which is 
a deanery of itself, and as such claims exemption 
from the supervision of the arch-deacon, and the 
authority of the diocesan. Battle in Sussex is 
almost the other example in England. 

I may add one or two other allusions to 
although, unfortunately not one of them now 
exists. The neighbourhood of Torquay seems to 
have had a peculiar attraction for the Saxons. 
" The place names in the vicinity are almost 
exclusively of Teutonic character, and it affords 
two of the rare local instances of the proven 
existence of a church before the Conquest. * See 
maria cerce' (or St. Mary's Church) appears in 
Domesday as belonging to the Earl of Moreton, 
and as having been held by Ordulf. The Saxon 


font is still in existence, preserved through the 
churchwarden period by being partially buried, 
reversed, in the floor. It is ornamented with rude 
and very quaint carvings of figures of men and 
animals." The other local case is that at 
Churston, which we will take after a visit to 
Dawlish. In a charter of the time of Edward 
the Confessor, 1044, we find a valuable allusion 
to the subject of Saxon ecclesiastical edifices. 
In laying down the parish boundaries the 
document says : " First at Teignmouth ; up along 
the estuary to crampansteort (anchor point) ; and 
so back again by the Salterns along the street on 
the west side of St. Michael's Church." This 
mention of St. Michael's Church, as Mr. David- 
son has remarked, is especially interesting. Not 
only is a reference in Saxon boundaries to a 
church very rare, but proof of the existence of 
this venerable structure as a Saxon edifice 
twenty-two years before the Conquest will be 
welcome to all antiquaries. Unfortunately this 
curious structure, which survived till the present 
century, was removed in 1821, and so disappeared 
the last remnant of Saxon architecture in Devon- 
shire. Leland appears to have visited it in the 
sixteenth century, and about a century ago an 


account of it, with an excellent engraving, 
appeared in the Gentleman's Magazine. Pol- 
whele says that the style of its architecture, or 
that of its towers may be referred to the Saxons. 
"Take away the church from these towers (he 
says) and they would favour more of a military 
than a religious structure." Another writer adds 
that the church, dedicated to St. Michael, was 
regarded as the oldest in the jurisdiction of the 
Dean of Exeter. " The first structure was small, 
and was built, according to the account of the 
ancient inhabitants, for the conveniency of the 
fishermen going to prayers before they went about 
their fishery, and as an emblem thereof, several 
golden herrings were hung up in the church." 

It will have been observed that the old way 
of spelling church was "cerce." In those 
dialects which developed the hard sound for the 
consonants this word became kirk, whence the 
frequent occurrence of Kirkgates in the north, 
denoting the road to kirk or the church. In 
the south the soft sound survived, and hence 
it is that we find near Brixham a manor or parish 
called in Domesday Cerceton, and now Churston ; 
then containing a population of twenty-five, but 
glorying in the possession of a Saxon sanctuary. 


In addition to these evidences of Christianity in 
days preceding the Conquest, we find a few 
crosses and inscribed stones, which have con- 
siderable interest for the antiquary. From these, 
however, I must turn away in order to notice the 
use of the 

In former days one might have seen on the door 
of the Haccombe Church no fewer than four 
horse-shoes. Tradition affirmed that they were 
relics of a curious competition. A wager, it is 
said, was once made between a Champernowne 
and a Carew as to which could swim the farthest 
out to sea on horse-back. He who won the 
wager was to receive a manor, and as Carew 
was the fortunate competitor he forthwith unshod 
his horse, and nailed the victor's shoes to the 
door in commemoration of his feat. The story 
might pass muster were it not that we know 
from authentic sources that the horse-shoe was 
employed as a charm in churches as well as on 
stable-doors and at the entrances to dwelling- 
houses. We may set this story off by another 
relating to Horwood in the vicinity of Bideford, 
Devon, For many years this was the principal 
residence of the family of Pollards, and in the 


church a notable monument to one of the former 
matrons may still be seen. It represents a lady 
in the garb of the fifteenth century, enveloping 
three children in the folds of her robe. On the 
door of the church a horse-shoe might formerly 
be seen, which tradition affirms to have been 
placed there by the Cornish blacksmith, Michael 
Joseph, who marched through the place in 1497 
at the head of an insurrectionary party, and met 
with a crushing defeat on Blackheath. 

The presence of horse-shoes or their repre- 
sentations in churches is by no means unusual, 
and the visitor to Melrose Abbey will remember 
seeing in one of the chapels of the south aisle 
an ancient kneeling stone, bearing on its top the 
inscription rate pnr auima cijfrat fietri JUrarii, 
and on one side the representation of four 
horse-shoes. These were supposed to possess 
a charm, and to be capable of counteracting 
evil and covetous wishes. I have during recent 
days seen a cottage facing a graveyard protected 
against the invasion of sprites and witches by the 
magic horse-shoe, and when we remember that 
other kinds of charms were constantly employed in 
churches it will be easy to see that in Devonshire 
the horse-shoe had a similar use. 

a Brief life^Stor? of tbe Catbe&ral. 

T ET us take our stand in imagination, or, 
*i* better still, in reality, here, within the 
Cathedral Close, and try to read the history of 
this venerable pile. If we were compelled to 
limit ourselves to the actual history of these 
identical stones, our story would go no further 
back than the twelfth century of our era. Every 
biographer, however, likes to give a chapter to 
the parentage of his hero, and, if possible, go 
back a few generations in order to create a halo 
of greatness to set off his portrait to advantage. 
And it may be permitted us to indulge our fancy 
somewhat, and go back in imagination to those 
days prior even to the Roman Conquest, when 
the semi-mythic Druid held sway over the faith 
of men, as the Phoenician or other trader did 
over their purses. We may dream of a circle of 
stones, or a temple of green branches, and picture 
to ourselves the nature of the rites performed on 
this sacred spot. Then we may imagine a Roman 
altar reared, where a shrine to some unknown god 
had stood before, and think of the representatives 


of the Eternal City offering libations to the deities, 
which without number clamoured for their homage. 
The Roman in due time gives place to the Kelt, 
and we tread on firmer ground when our feet are 
on the soil which was trodden by those British 
tribes which were sandwiched between the earlier 
Roman and the later Saxon. We know that 
Exeter had her Christian altars in the days of 
the Keltic occupation, and if no trace of the 
sanctuaries then erected survive in actual brick 
and mortar, we still find the proofs in the un- 
broken record of sundry dedications. The Keltic 
Church element must here have had a strong- 
hold, and when the Saxon Conquest secured 
Exeter to the loyal followers of Athelstan and 
his successors, it was but natural that the new 
type of religion, which received its colour from 
Rome, should endeavour to utilize the advantages 
of the situation. Hence, even in Saxon times, 
possibly in the days of Athelstan himself, a 
Benedictine monastery arose here, dedicated 
jointly to the Virgin and St. Peter. 

We have seen that Exeter was not at first 
chosen as the seat of episcopal authority. When 
Leofric, however, in 1050, with the consent and 
aid of his sovereign and the pope, transferred his 


stool from Crediton to Exeter, he naturally 
selected the monastic church as the most suitable 
spot in which to place his throne. The story of 
his induction, with Edward to right of him, and 
Editha to left of him, has been often and vividly 
recited. We are told that the monastery was not 
the only religious building which at that time 
occupied the site of the present Cathedral, but 
that two other houses devoted to sacred use 
stood within the precincts. Be that as it may, 
no Saxon remains are now to be found there. 
Leofric, the first bishop of Exeter, held sway 
here from the year of his translation in 1050 till 
his death in 1073. The Norman Conquest did 
not result in his deposition, and though he found 
the Minster reduced to extreme poverty, he was 
able to recover many of its lost possessions and 
add others thereto, so that when Osbern was 
promoted to the See he found it wealthy and 
flourishing. The successor of Leofric died in 
1 102, and during the life-time of these two 
prelates the Saxon Minster continued to be the 
Cathedral (1050-1 102). It is supposed by some 
authorities that a relic of this Saxon sanctuary still 
survives in the little chapel which adjoins the 
chapter-house, and is dedicated to the Holy 


Ghost ; for the rest, all has long since been 

For some time after the death of Osbern, the 
Church and the Crown were hotly contesting 
their rival claims to the right of investiture, but 
in the end Warelwast, a nephew of William the 
Conqueror, was placed upon the episcopal throne, 
and under his direction the work of erecting a 
church more in harmony with the feeling and aims 
of the religious leaders of the age was commenced. 
At this point opinions vary. Some maintain that 
the towers now standing on the north and south 
sides were originally erected at the west end of 
the Norman nave ; while others, with more show 
of reason, affirm that they were from the first 
intended as transepts. They are dedicated to 
St. John and St. Paul, and were erected, together 
with the choir and eastern bay of the nave, by 
Warelwast. The work thus begun took just a 
century to bring it to completion (1107-1206), 
and during that time no fewer than six bishops 
were in charge of the See. If the time seems 
long it must be remembered that the age was not 
without its troubles, nor the Cathedral without its 
vicissitudes. When Stephen besieged the city 
thirty years after the election of Warelwast, the 


new-born church was greatly injured, and much of 
the recent work had to be gone over again. 

The building, as it left the hands of Henry 
Marshall, in 1206, included the two towers, the 
choir with its chapels of St. James and St. 
Andrew, the Lady Chapel with its adjuncts 
(known as St. Gabriel's Chapel and the Chapel 
of St. Mary Magdalen), and part of the nave ; 
all of which have been more or less altered as the 
years have rolled by. In the second quarter of 
the thirteenth century, Bishop Bruere erected the 
chapter-house, and fitted the choir with stalls and 
seats. To him, therefore, we probably owe the 
curious and unique misereres the earliest, per- 
haps, which this country possesses. 

The Cathedral was now on the point of re- 
newing its youth. The period of gestation and 
infancy had been so extended that, when it finally 
presented itself to the world as a shapely child, it 
was no longer a pure Norman, but bore the 
marks of transition, as seen in the change from 
the semi-circular to the pointed arch. The direct 
offspring of a Saxon Minster, it was now to 
develope into a graceful building with the well- 
marked characteristics of the Decorated period as 
its principal features. The initiator of the new 


scheme was Bishop Quivil, who was on the 
throne from 1280 till 1291, but another hundred 
years elapsed before the work was completed. 
Without pulling down what his predecessors had 
built, the artist clothed their massive work 
with grace and beauty, adding ornament and 
lightness to the fabric, and so transforming it 
from a ponderous mass into a sanctuary marked 
by the greatest elegance and taste. Peter Quivil, 
whose monument may be seen in the Lady 
Chapel, was succeeded by Bishop Bilton (1292- 
1307). He began the work of transforming the 
choir, and proceeded to beautify the Lady Chapel 
with its quasi-transepts. Next came Stapledon 
(1308-1327), to whose taste and generosity we 
owe not only the elaborate sedilia and the 
remarkable choir screen, or ambon, formerly 
known as la pulpytte, but also in all probability 
the " magnificent episcopal throne," towering to a 
height of fifty-two feet in elaborately carved oak. 
It is estimated that from this period onward, for 
the space of a century "and a half, one thousand 
pounds was expended on an average every year 
in enlarging and beautifying the Cathedral. 
Bishop Grandisson, who came into office when a 
London mob had put an end to Stapledon in 


Cheapside (1327), did not slacken his hand. He 
was of royal lineage, and to his sister, Lady 
Catherine, we owe the romantic story usually 
associated with the institution of the Order of the 
Garter. He was a man of literary tastes, as his 
Legendary and Ordinal witness. The former, 
which has been published within recent years, is 
an invaluable MS. in two volumes, folio, beautifully 
executed. Each of the sheets, numbering about 
five hundred and fifty, bears the autograph of the 
learned ecclesiastic. In 1358 the bishop suc- 
ceeded to the peerage owing to the death of his 
brother, and the wealth which thus came into his 
possession was unstintingly devoted to the clearing 
away of pecuniary difficulties, and the furtherance 
of the plans of his large-hearted predecessors. 
He extended the nave, vaulted its roof and that of 
the aisles with stone, inserted windows in the 
aisles, and rebuilt the chapel on the south of the 
main entrance. 

Grandisson was succeeded in 1370 by Bishop 
Brantyngham, who added the splendid western 
facade with its noble array of statues, including 
" prophets and apostles, martyrs, saints, and 
kings," though much of the elaborate tracery 
bears witness to the continuance of the work by 


later artists, and by other hands. The great east 
window was now inserted, the cloisters were 
added, and by the end of the fourteenth century 
the structure was practically complete. During 
the next century the chapter-house was greatly 
modified, and we now see it virtually as it was 
left by Bishop Bothe in 1478. 

The last four hundred years have told their 
tale in various ways. Time and atmospheric 
forces have left their finger-marks as surely, if 
not as ruthlessly, as Puritan iconoclast and rebel 
vandal. For some years a brick partition 
Separated the building into two parts, in one of 
which the Presbyterians worshipped, while the 
Independents used the other. After the Res- 
toration the building was repaired and beautified 
at an outlay of ,25,000. Then came the purchase 
of the renowned " pair of organs," and last, but 
not least, a ' thorough renovation or restoration 
under the direction of Sir Gilbert Scott, which, 
as usual, gave rise to a great deal of controversy 
and heart-burning. 

As you stand and gaze upon the magnificent 
pile, you are able now to divide its history into 
three periods of four centuries. The first age, 
from the ninth to the twelfth century, was parental. 


Next followed the age of growth and develop- 
ment, from the twelfth to the fifteenth. Then 
came the age of restfulness and quiescence, during 
which growth has ceased, and the energies have 
been expended in conserving what it has taken 
so long a time to acquire. You see, more- 
over, specimens of the workmanship of almost 
every period, from the time of Warelwast to that 
of Bothe (1112-1478). If the massive Norman 
work has been shorn of its baldness, and draped 
in beauty by a later hand, the work is still there, 
and may be studied from without. Then the 
period of transition may be traced in the pointed 
arch, till it merges into the style known as Early 
English. Gradually the second period of tran- 
sition arrives, and we then glide into the Decorated 
period, characterized by its beautiful mouldings, 
elaborate tracery, and lavish ornamentation, with 
which our survey is complete. 

To draw attention to the details would be 
impossible. Pictures and hand-books abound, and 
the visitor to the Cathedral will find no difficulty 
in obtaining an efficient guide should his own 
knowledge be insufficient, or the manuals be- 

The west front, if not all that could be desired 



from the architectural standpoint, will at once 
command attention by the richness and variety 
of its sculpture. Within is the tomb of Bishop 
Grandisson, and in the north aisle of the nave 
will be found the colours of the nth Devonshire 
Regiment, and those of the Qth Royal Lancers, 
with suitable inscriptions. In the choir the 
curious misereres may be inspected, and attention 
will be drawn to the Minstrels' Gallery, with the 
organ and screen. Many noble monuments will 
detain the student of this branch of ecclesiastical 
art, while the throne and other carved work will 
appeal to another class. The window tracery, 
painted glass, ancient clock, bells, chapter-house, 
frescoes, corbels, capitals, library, and armorial 
bearings, will each find their admirers, and the 
verdict will be an endorsement of Mr. Knight's, 
when he says : " The interior is in many respects 
surpassingly noble and beautiful." Viewing the 
building as a whole, the student will now be able 
to appreciate the remarks of Prof. Freeman, with 
which we bring our story to a close. 

Dr. Freeman says that the plan as we see it 
carried out, exhibits perhaps the most perfect 
specimen in the world of bilateral symmetry. 
Just as when a sheep is cleft in two down the 


backbone, each half is the exact counterpart of 
the other, so if the ridge of the Cathedral were 
taken as the dividing line, each part would 
exactly duplicate the other. " Not only does 
pillar answer to pillar, and aisle to aisle, and 
window tracery to window tracery, but also 
chapel to chapel ; St. John Baptist's to St. Paul's, 
St. James' to St. Andrew's, St. Saviour's to St. 
George's, St. Gabriel's to St. Mary Magdalene's ; 
while, to crown all, the grand characteristic feature 
of our Cathedral the transeptal towers com- 
pletes this balance of parts, and was, indeed, the 
primary instance and model of it." 

3n the Wafce of tbe 

IT is not given to the Devonshire antiquary 
to glory in any of the first rank ruins of 
monastic building in which our country is so rich. 
No counterpart to Fountains or Furness, Tintern 
or Tewkesbury, Wenlock or Buildwas, Melrose 
or Dryburgh, is anywhere to be found. This is 
not because the county has always been of that 
atheistic and heathenish character that monasticism 
could not thrive there. Far from it. History says 
otherwise ; and if the romance of crumbling stone 
and mouldering arch is almost absolutely lacking, 
we may still visit the sites of not a few ancient 
monasteries, and say Time was when you might 
have seen here not ruins merely, but buildings 
which would vie with any in the land for pic- 
turesque beauty and wealth of endowment. Let 
us gather up a few facts as we roam from place 
to place. We need not burden ourselves with 
dates, or try to carry in our minds a list of the 
monastic buildings in the order in which they 
were founded, or which they merit by reason of 
their wealth or influence. 


In studying the rise and growth of the 
Cathedral, we have seen that Exeter was early 
chosen as a suitable centre for the establishment 
of the monastic rule. If tradition is to be trusted, 
the Benedictines found a home here so early as 
the days of Athelstan, who is said to have granted 
to the monastery twenty-six manors by way of 
endowment. He also gave one-third of the sacred 
relics which he had collected to the Minster, which 
was dedicated to St. Mary and St. Peter. Athel- 
stan came to the throne in 925, but there are 
those who assert that the Minster at Exeter dates 
from the days of Ethelred, more than half a 
century earlier, though I am not aware of the 
existence of any document supporting the state- 
ment that it was founded in 868. It is reason- 
able to suppose that Alfred's influence over, and 
connexion with, the neighbouring district, may 
also have been in its favour. Associated in very 
early times with the Benedictine monastery and 
the Saxon minster was also a nunnery ; but when 
the Danes made their dreaded incursions the 
monks and nuns fled in dismay, the buildings 
were injured, the charters destroyed, and desola- 
tion everywhere held sway. When, in the days 
of the Confessor, Leofric, Bishop of Devon, 


resolved to transfer his stool from Crediton to 
Exeter, the Saxon minster was fixed upon for the 
Cathedral, and the monastery and nunnery were 
attached to the same, and placed under a new 
regime. The only trace of old-time monasticism 
in Exeter, therefore, is to be found in the existence 
of the Cathedral on the site once occupied by the 
friars of St. Benedict. 

Several places in Devonshire are still in name 
associated with the monks, though the worthies 
themselves, and in some cases every trace of their 
former connection with the locality, have long 
since disappeared. Chief among these is the 
place known as Buckland Monachorum, or, as we 
might perhaps phrase it to-day, Monks' Bookland, 
land held by the book or charter. Situated on 
the eastern side of the Tavy, and within easy 
reach of either Plymouth or Tavistock, Buckland 
Abbey dates from the latter part of the thirteenth 
century, when it was founded and endowed by 
Amicia, dowager countess of Baldwin, Earl of 
Devon. The house suffered the fate of all 
similar establishments at the Dissolution, when 
its revenues were returned at ^241 175. g%d. 
The Abbey Church was converted into a dwelling 
house by Sir Richard Grenville, who held the 


property between the years 1542 and 1580; and 
is now chiefly of interest on account of its 
association with Drake, the renowned navigator 
and naval warrior, some of whose relics are still to 
be found amongst its treasures. The story of the 
house has been carefully and exhaustively com- 
piled from the most reliable sources by Mr. 
Brooking Rowe. 

From Buckland we may pass on to Tavistock, 
in many respects the most familiar of all the 
abbeys of Devonshire, on account of the con- 
nection therewith of Mrs. Bray, the fertile author 
of many local works. The remains, though 
picturesque, are utterly inadequate for the task 
of representing the former splendour of the 
buildings ; and we must bring to bear upon them 
both a vivid imagination, and a wide knowledge 
of monastic institutions, if we would realize what 
they were like in the days of their glory. There 
is no reason to doubt the truth of the current 
report that this Abbey eclipsed every other 
religious house in Devonshire, as well in the 
extent and convenience, as in the magnificence 
of its buildings. The monastery, like so many 
others of which we have read, owed its founda- 
tion and site to a vision, and the ministry of an 


angel ; while its later honours included that of 
royal patronage. It is said to have been originally 
founded about the year 961, but the Danish 
ravages at the end of the century resulted in its 
complete destruction. It was afterwards rebuilt 
on a scale proportionate to the spirit of the age, 
and the liberal patronage of the Crown ; while 
numerous men of note thenceforward filled its 
abbot's seat. The abbot had a seat in the 
House of Peers, and in 1458 was mitred. One 
of the abbots become bishop of the united Sees of 
Devon and Cornwall, while another was eventually 
made Archbishop of York, and had the honour of 
crowning the Conqueror King of England. At 
that time, according to the Domesday Book, the 
extent of the estates pertaining to Tavistock Abbey 
was far greater than that of any other religious 
house in Devonshire ; while at the Dissolution 
it was valued at ^"902 55. ;d. A bull was granted 
by Pope Leo X., which exempted the house from 
the jurisdiction of the bishop, the abbot being in 
his own person both baron and bishop, at once a 
lord spiritual and a lord temporal. 

Tavistock Abbey is honourably associated with 
the art of printing, while the school which the 
monks established and taught was the direct 


precursor of the present institution for the educa- 
tion of the young in that town. During the 
Norman period and the succeeding ages, the 
Abbey and domestic buildings underwent great 
changes, and witnessed numerous additions. Of 
the earliest portions few traces now remain, but 
the gatehouse is still, as frequently elsewhere, in 
excellent preservation, the upper room being used 
as a library. The main road runs through the 
archway, as was the case until recently at 
Worksop and some other places. During the 
last century, a " vandal named Saunders built on 
part of the site, and with the materials, the Abbey 
House, which is now the Bedford Hotel. The 
east gate, essentially of late twelfth-century work, 
with fifteenth-century additions, however, still 
remains ; with the western gateway, commonly 
called Betsy Grimbald's Tower, the tradition 
being that a nun of that name was murdered 
there. There are also the refectory, now used as 
the Unitarian Chapel, its groined porch being 
converted into a dairy attached to the Bedford 
Hotel ; a fragment of the north wall of the great 
Abbey Church, sometimes called Ordulph's Tomb, 
and at other times Childe's ; and the boundary 
walls next the Tavy, with a tower which has 


always been known as the Still House. The 
fragment of the Abbey Church is in the churchyard 
of the parish church of St. Eustatius ; but the site 
of the Abbey Church itself is now part of the 
public street." Sic transit gloria mundi ! 

We have already in these pages been reminded 
of the past glories of Crediton. Several bishops 
had their Cathedral here before Exeter became 
the head of the See, so that long before the days 
of the Conqueror it had its Minster and its com- 
plement of priests, though it was never apparently 
connected with either of the great orders of monks. 
As an institution which has been successively 
Cathedral, Minster, Collegiate, and Parish Church, 
the building has seen many changes and more 
than one dedication. From King Athelstan's 
charter to Crediton we learn that the original 
patron saint of the church was St. Mary. The 
Saxon Cathedral was replaced by the Collegiate 
Church of the Holy Cross, but an early document, 
which is still preserved, contains an allusion to the 
double dedication in the following words : " We 
have confirmed the above-written indulgences, 
obtained by the diligence of our predecessors, 
bishops of Crediton and Exeter, at various times, 
for the church of the Holy Cross and the ever- 


Virgin Mary of Crediton." There were formerly 
stalls here for eight canons and eighteen vicars. 
Its central tower is still a splendid example of 
English architecture, and its curious altarpiece 
represents Moses and Aaron receiving the law. 
The east window is worthy of examination, and 
those who appreciate the work of an honest 
historian, who has endeavoured to keep the past 
from altogether eluding our grasp, will also give a 
passing glance at the memorial window of Mr. 
R. J. King, who was interred in the adjoining 
graveyard in 1879. 

Another of the few religious houses which had 
been erected in pre-Norman times will be found 
represented by a monastery at Buckfastleigh. In 
this instance history has repeated itself. When 
the monasteries were dissolved the Abbey of 
Buckfast and its adjacent lands, valued then at 
^500 within a fraction, passed to Sir Thomas 
Dennis. After remaining for about a century 
with his family and descendants, the property was 
acquired by Sir Richard Baker. A modern house 
was eventually erected on the site, and this is now 
"once more the home of monks of the Benedictine 
order, who are successfully engaged in its recon- 
struction upon the ancient lines." We could have 


wished that something, more in harmony with the 
spirit of the age than monachism is, was being 
done on a spot where good work on these lines 
was done in an age when the system was a 
necessity and a boon. 

From Domesday we learn that the Abbey was 
a flourishing institution before the advent of 
William the Conqueror, and that it was possessed 
of considerable endowments and belongings. The 
monks of Edward I.'s time affirmed that the manor 
of Zeal Monachorum was held by gift of Canute, but 
when the monastery was founded, and by whom it 
was originally endowed, we are unable to say. It 
seems to have been originally a Benedictine house, 
but after the establishment of the Cistercian order 
it became united thereto in the twelfth century. 
In the year 1236 the monks were admitted to the 
privileges of the Totnes institution, known as the 
Guild Merchant, which had been founded by the 
authority of a charter granted by John in 1215. 
On the back of one of the membership rolls still 
preserved is to be seen a memorandum of "an 
agreement between the burgesses of Totnes and 
the abbot and convent of Buckfast," permitting 
the abbot and monks who had been received into 
the Guild to buy, but not to sell. A similar 


privilege was likewise extended to the brethren 
belonging to Torre Abbey. 

Of this Abbey, which lies within the bounds of 
the fashionable resort known as Torquay, few 
remains are left. Those which have survived the 
wreck of time, and have escaped the vandal's pick 
and shovel, are of unusual interest. One of the 
few remaining crypts of which the county can 
boast was discovered here, and opened out during 
some restorations which were being carried out a 
few years ago. There are a few portions of the 
old Abbey Church still to be seen, including some 
remains of the tower and chancel, together with 
the entrance to the chapter-house. As at Tavis- 
tock, the gateway remains fairly intact, and forms 
a pleasing object within the grounds, which now 
contain a mansion which has been converted into 
an hotel. The gateway has been embattled for 
purposes of defence, and an examination of the 
western face shews it to belong generally to the 
Decorated period. The house was at one time 
among the richest in the county, and even ranked 
as the richest Premonstratensian Abbey in the 
kingdom. It was built in the reign of Henry II. ; 
richly endowed by Lord Brewer, or, as the older 
form has it, De Briwere ; dedicated to the Saviour, 


the Trinity, and the Virgin ; and, in 1196, settled 
by an abbot and six monks. In due time the 
manor and church of Woolborough, or Newton 
Abbot, came into its possession, with lands at 
Woodbury and Buckland, the tithes of the ancient 
St. Mary Church, manors of Kingswear arid 
Ilsham, the church of Townstal, with jurisdiction 
over Dartmouth, and much besides. When the 
Dissolution came the returns were entered at 
^396 os. i id. per annum. It passed about a 
century later into the hands of the Carys, one 
of the more noteworthy of Devonshire families, 
which had long been seated at Cockington. The 
monks were men of business, hence their admission 
into the Guild Merchant of Totnes. 

Among other houses we may mention Hartland 
Abbey, now a mansion, embodying the arched 
cloister built during the Decorated period by 
Abbot John of Exeter. The Abbey is said to 
have been originally founded in Saxon times by 
Gytha, the mother of Harold, who fell at Battle in 
attempting to repel the Norman invader. The 
famous Earl Godwin, so tradition affirms, was in 
great peril at sea, but being preserved from ship- 
wreck, his devoted consort, to shew her gratitude 
to Almighty God, founded this Abbey, and dedi- 


cated it to St. Nectan. In later days, it was re-en- 
dowed by one Geoffrey de Dinant, and converted 
into a house for Augustine monks. Other patrons 
bear the well-known names of Peverell, Boterell, 
and Tracy. The delightful seclusion of the spot 
renders it peculiarly attractive in the summer 
months, while the botanist will find much to 
delight and reward him, especially among the 

Modbury, "one of the oldest market towns in 
the county," was formerly possessed of a priory, 
which was founded during the reign of Stephen, 
" by an ancestor of the Champernownes, as a cell 
to the Abbey of St. Peter-sur-Dive, Normandy. 
When the alien houses were suppressed, this 
passed at first to Tavistock Abbey, but afterwards 
to Eton College." Otterton, too, had its priory, 
which, like that of Modbury, was merely a cell 
attached to a monastery in Normandy, and making 
provision for four monks only. A few scanty 
remains are yet to be seen to tell of what has 
been, and remind us of the changes which all 
things mundane undergo. A Cluniac Priory was 
founded by Judhel de Totnes, at Barnstaple, and 
dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene. Its yearly 
income at the time of the Dissolution was estimated 


at ^129 155. 8d. It is specially worthy of mention 
here, however, because it is connected with one of 
the most interesting events in the recent annals 
of antiquarian research in Devonshire. A few 
years ago the remains of the chapel of the priory, 
dating from the twelfth century, were found "in 
the main walls of a couple of ancient, but much 
modernized, dwellings, so perfect as to enable its 
plan, which is somewhat peculiar on the basilica 
type to be distinctly traced." To the same 
Judhel we also probably owe the Priory of St. 
Mary at Totnes, some portions of which still 
remain, and are used as the Guildhall and dwelling 

And now, having visited some of the less note- 
worthy of the monastic buildings, it remains to 
turn our attention again to two or three which 
have made a greater mark. We find at Plympton, 
for example, remains of an ancient priory. A 
dwelling house, formed out of the refectory, 
preserves for us the ancient Norman crypt, while 
a few fragments of the once magnificent church 
may be found adjoining the parish church of St. 
Mary. Here Warelwast, nephew of William the 
Conqueror, and first Norman bishop of the See of 
Exeter, who is said to have resigned his post on 


account of blindness, was buried. Warelwast 
suppressed the earlier monastery which he found 
here, in 1121, and founded in its stead an 
Augustinian priory, which in time came to be the 
most wealthy monastic institution in this part of 
the country. When the end came, thanks to the 
liberal endowments and benefactions of the Valle- 
torts, Redverses, and others, its annual income 
amounted to upwards of nine hundred pounds. 
The earliest institution dated, however, from the 
ninth century in all probability, and was therefore 
a Saxon foundation. At the time of Warelwast 
it consisted of a -dean and four canons, together 
with a corresponding number of female inmates. 
It was the presence of the latter which scandalized 
the Norman bishop, who thought that men given 
up to so holy a life should for ever foreswear the 
pleasures of the matrimonial estate. It is not for 
me to decide whether or not the life which these 
monks were living was in harmony with the 
requirements of the moral law, but it seems evident 
by the action of their superior that they were 
guilty of a breach of the canonical law, which, 
alas ! has too often been put first. 

Newenham, "the one Cistercian house of Devon 
which has the least to shew for its former great- 



ness," is situated a short distance south of 
Axminster, on the road to Seaton. The trifling 
remains will be found in an orchard reached by a 
pathway on the right through some fields. Some 
of the pillars with their arches, and the east 
window of the church, still remain in situ ; but the 
mansion at Ashe, famous as the birthplace of the 
great Duke of Maryborough, must be visited if 
the stones of the Abbey are to be seen. The 
mansion having suffered severely during the Civil 
Wars, the owner ruthlessly utilized Newenham as 
a quarry, carrying away everything that might be 
of service to him in restoring his residence. 
Hence its present inglorious appearance. From 
the Cartulary of Glastonbury, preserved in the 
Bodleian Library, we learn that the manor and 
hundred of Axminster, which belonged to the 
Crown at the time of the Conquest, were granted 
in 1246 to the Abbey of Newenham by Reginald 
de Mohun. From this we gather that the Abbey 
had already been founded, but the event was a 
very recent one. During this year the cemetery 
was first consecrated, the site of the Abbey having 
been blessed the year before, when, in 1245, 
William, or his brother Reginald de Mohun, set 
the plan in operation. In connection with thjs 


institution we find a curious custom. A purchase 
of land having been made for the sum of thirty 
marks, it was further agreed that the monastery 
yearly supply the vendor, or his representatives, 
one pair of white gloves on the Feast of the 
Nativity of St. John the Baptist. 

The foundation stone of the Abbey " Church 
of the Blessed Mary of Newenham " was laid in 
September, 1254, Reginald de Mohun described 
as "fundator of this Abbey," William, his brother, 
and one Wymond de Ralegh, being mentioned as 
assisting at the function, the five stones being laid 
in the presence of Henry the Abbot, and all the con- 
vent, in honour of the Holy Trinity, the Blessed 
Mary Virgin, and all the Saints. Reginald 
gave directions requiring that his body be buried 
before the high altar of the same sanctuary, and in 
less than three years after he had gone the way of 
all flesh. The documents relating to this once 

famous house are very numerous, and the local 


historians have used them well. The arms of the 
abbey appear to be those of the founder. As in 
many other cases, the common seal consisted of a 
vesica representing the Virgin Mother seated 
under a canopy with her first born son upon her 
knees, On either side was a shield bearing the 


cross of de Mohun and the Maunche. A complete 
lists of abbots from 1246 till 1539 has been 

Ford Abbey, about seven miles from Axminster, 
might justly have claimed attention here, on the 
ground that during the centuries of its actual life 
as a Cistercian monastery it was within the county 
of Devonshire. Its story is told along with that 
of other houses belonging to this county, but as 
the house is now included within the boundaries 
of Dorsetshire, and its history is a lengthy one, 
we must reluctantly pass it by with the simple 
statement that it was founded in 1141, under 
circumstances bordering on the romantic ; while 
the roll of its abbots contains the names of several 
notable men, including the Confessor of King 
John, and Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury. 

The only other house which I am able to 
mention is Dunkeswell, one of the five Cistercian 
abbeys which Devonshire formerly possessed, and 
one of the trio which occupied the eastermost 
corner of the county. The Lord Brewer, or De 
Briwere, of whom we have already spoken, pur- 
chased the manor of Dunkeswell in the last year 
of the twelfth century, and within the course of 
a couple of years, viz., in 1201, the abbey was 


founded. Besides being endowed by its founder, 
who gave his lands and the advowsons of the 
churches of Dunkeswell and Wolford, the house 
was further enriched with numerous grants and 
donations from neighbouring landowners and 
patrons ; and a colony of monks was brought 
over from Ford for the purpose of establishing 
the Cistercian rule. We are, however, in ignorance 
respecting the name of the first abbot, and 
whether or not he was promoted from a lower 
post at Ford to fill the more honourable one at 

As the founder of Newenham had directed his 
body to be laid within the church there, so De 
Briwere, though he had established more than 
one other religious house in Devonshire, selected 
the choir of Dunkeswell Abbey Church as the 
place of interment for himself, and probably for 
his wife, and hither his remains were brought in 
1227. The abbot was cited before the bishop of 
the diocese in 1260 for having removed the font 
and bells from the church at Doddeton, and was 
required to re-open the sanctuary, and conduct 
daily service therein. The abbey adopted the 
arms of its founder, while the common seal bears 
a representation of the Blessed Virgin. 


Of the remaining minsters and monasteries, 
abbeys and priories, which once existed in Devon- 
shire, I have not space to write. What they 
were, and where they may be found, will be 
gathered from the concluding note, for which I 
am indebted to that indefatigable scholar, Mr. 
R. N. Worth. 

Twenty-four religious houses (he says) were 
suppressed in Devon by Henry VIII. These 
were Tavistock Abbey ; St. Nicholas' Priory, 
Exeter ; Cowick Priory ; Polsloe Priory (nuns) ; 
Totnes Priory ; Pilton Priory Benedictine. 
Plympton Priory ; Hartland Abbey ; Frithelstock 
Priory ; Canonsleigh Priory (canonesses) ; Corn- 
worthy Priory Augustinian. Ford Abbey ; 
Newenham Abbey ; Buckfast Abbey ; Buckland 
Abbey ; Dunkeswell Abbey Cistercian. St. 
James' Priory, Exeter ; St. Mary Magdalene, 
Barnstaple ; Carswell Priory Cluniac. Fran- 
ciscan Convents at Exeter and Plymouth. Dom- 
inican Convent, Exeter. Carmelite Convent, 
Plymouth. Tor Abbey Nosbertine or Praemon- 
stratensian. The Benedictine Priories at Olterton 
and Modbury had been suppressed in previous 
reigns, the property of the first going to Zion 
house, of the latter to Eton. Concerning the 


Dominican house at Plymouth there are no details ; 
and we are not certain when it ceased to exist. 
Here, however, is a roll-call, to do justice to 
which a volume of no mean dimensions would be 

S5pgone Worthies. 

FEW counties have produced a greater number 
of men who have made their mark than 
Devonshire. Mariners and soldiers, artists and 
authors, discoverers and explorers, statesmen and 
poets, have come in goodly numbers from this fair 
corner of the land. I will not attempt to decide 
which is the greatest, The modern socialist 
would raise Kingsley on a lofty pedestal ; while 
the manner would take Sir Francis Drake as his 
hero. I confess that not one of the many noble 
men whose names appear on the roll-call of the 
illustrious appeals to me more powerfully than 
does Sir Joshua Reynolds. The reason is not far 
to seek. He was not merely a lover of art, and a 
painter of the first rank, but he was a man who 
had a clear insight into the principles upon which 
all art literary as well as pictorial is based. 
Hence his Discourses on Art are invaluable. One 
has only to leave out the word Art, and replace it 
by sculpture, preaching, composing, observing, or 
any other term, and the Discourses are still as 
true as they are of art. He who would make a 


sermon, or write a book, on the lines of these 
Lectures, would produce as perfect a result as he 
would who applied the principles to the production 
of a picture. Hence my regard for Reynolds. 
He aimed at truth. Before his day art scarcely 
existed in England, but since the delivery of his 
famous presidential addresses it has moved on- 
wards by leaps and bounds. 

The great artist was a clergyman's son. How 
many noteworthy men have owed their all to a 
similar fact. The sons of the clergy have greatly 
augmented our lists of poets, painters, botanists, 
historians, philosophers, and politicians. The 
air of the manse is congenial to the development 
of hereditary genius. The tenth child of the Rev. 
Samuel Reynolds, of Plympton, Joshua first saw 
the light on July i6th, 1723 ; and as his father 
was pedagogue as well as preacher, the boy 
received his mental outfit at the paternal hands. 
Reynolds is another illustration of the way in 
which men thwart the wishes of their parents in 
the matter of profession. He was destined to be a 
doctor, just as J. S. Blackie was set apart by his 
father for the law. As the latter became a pro- 
fessor of languages, the former became a professor 
of art. He had shown a love for drawing while 


still a child, and often busied himself in his spare 
moments by making copies of illustrations found 
in the books which his father's library contained. 

The age of seventeen is frequently decisive, 
and as at this period of youth the lad's taste for 
art was strong, his father wisely decided that he 
should become a painter instead of a doctor. He 
was, therefore, placed under the most eminent 
artist of the day in England ; but found abundant 
reason in after years to condemn the system of 
teaching which Hudson adopted. The pupil 
shewed himself so apt that his master's jealousy 
was aroused, and in two years their connexion 
was severed. He spent the next few years in his 
native county, and while developing the rules of 
his art, gave himself up to careful thought. His 
calm reflection soon led him to see the faults of 
the prevailing style, and he therefore resolved to 
visit the Continent, in order to study the great 
masters. Like a great many others, he felt a 
sense of disappointment when he first gazed upon 
the wonderful productions of Raffaelle and others. 
He found himself in the midst of works, whose 
execution he did not comprehend, because he was 
ignorant of the principles by which the artists had 
been guided in their studies. When he began to 


copy them, however, he became conscious of the 
growth of new perceptions and a new taste. He 
avoided slavish imitations, filled his mind with 
ideas, gave his hand continual play and exercise, 
and having caught the inspiration of genius from 
his masters, endeavoured to reproduce their con- 
ceptions. By 1760 he had become the most 
famous portrait painter of the day, and was 
earning as much as ,6,000 a year. He was 
elected the first President of the Royal Academy 
an institution which was founded in 1768, and 
was opened on the ist day of the following year. 
It was then that he received the honour of knight- 
hood, and began his custom of delivering his 
famous discourses. These were read every other 
year from the opening of the Academy down to 
1790, and are as fresh and valuable to-day as 
they were on the occasion of their first delivery. 
He was no orator, though his compositions are 
lucid as the day. After his last address was 
given he was taken ill, and having borne his 
affliction with singular fortitude for two years, he 
fell asleep on February 23rd, 1792, and was 
buried in St. Paul's Churchyard. 

Next to Reynolds I would place the precocious, 
erratic, opium-loving, poet-philosopher, Samuel 


Taylor Coleridge. What a strange life he lived ! 
Another product of a parsonage, Devonshire has 
seldom given birth to a mind of such wonderful 
capacity, or a child so wayward. With all his 
faults we love him still. He was one of the 
problems of his age. Some of his utterances are 
mystic ; much of his philosophy was a jingle of 
words, and of a great deal of his poetry it is im- 
possible for anyone to say what it means. Yet, 
when all the chaff has been winnowed away, the 
pure gold separated from the dross, and the 
wisdom purged of bathos, we have a large 
residuum of what is valuable and enduring left 
behind. We cannot by any means endorse his 
own verdict about his best work. Some of that 
which he regarded with the greatest pride has 
already been set aside as valueless, while some of 
his writings which were little prized by himself 
have grown in popularity year by year. His was 
not a practical mind. His biography is of never 
failing interest, and the masterly study of his life 
by Brandl should be in the hands of everyone 
who would know the strength and weakness of 
the Coleridgean character. Of his poetry it is 
needless to speak. Tender, wide of range, weird, 
unfinished, it is full of those surprises which are 


inevitably associated with genius. His Aids to 
Reflection, and some of his other prose volumes, 
have gone through many editions, and some 
of his dicta will live as long as the English tongue 

Samuel Taylor Coleridge was born at Ottery 
St. Mary, October 2ist, 1772. His father, the 
Rev. John Coleridge, like the father of Sir Joshua 
Reynolds, was both vicar of the parish, and head- 
master of the Grammar School of that town. He 
was no mean scholar, and created some amuse- 
ment by proposing to simplify the study of Latin 
through the change of the term ablative into 
quale-quare-quidditive ! Before he was ten years 
of age young Coleridge was entered as a pupil of 
Christ's Hospital, and if he here made sundry 
acquaintances whose names he would gladly 
forget, one at least amongst his schoolfellows 
became an ardent friend and admirer the gentle 
and genial Lamb. 

Coleridge had the honour and joy to be asso- 
ciated in later years with Wordsworth and 
Southey, and especially in conjunction with the 
former did some valuable work ; but his chequered 
life ran its course with little reference to his native 
place, and to this day his name is left without a, 


memorial in the place of his birth. He stands out 
as perhaps the most striking illustration of the 
insanity of genius which Devonshire has pro- 

To the same category as the offspring of the 
parsonage belongs the Rev. Charles Kingsley. 
One can easily understand how the magic in- 
fluences of Clovelly would operate upon a tem- 
perament such as his. There is, however, no 
need to dwell upon the life-story of this notable 
man, seeing that his biography has been so 
recently read by all who have any literary tastes. 
Let us go back to earlier days. Probably no 
family has more largely interwoven its name and 
deeds with the history of Bygone Devon than 
that of the Drakes. And of all the noteworthy 
men and remarkable women which have borne 
this name, none stands out more prominently than 
does the redoubtable Sir Francis, the hero of the 
Spanish Armada. Like many another man who 
has made his mark, Francis Drake was born in a 
cottage. His birthday, too, like that of other 
notables, is lost in oblivion, and we cannot 
certainly ascertain even his birth-year, though it 
may with some probability be referred to 1539. 
Crowndale, where he first saw the light, is about 


a mile to the south-west of Tavistock. While 
tradition affirms that his father was an honest 
mariner, history rather assigns to him the role ot 
a clergyman. Such being the case, Drake joins 
hands with Reynolds, Coleridge, and Kingsley, 
and goes to prove the truth of the remarks already 
made respecting the potency of the parsonage. 

Exeter, as Mr. Worth reminds us, has a mar- 
vellous muster-roll of worthies. Archbishop 
Langton, the framer of Magna Charta, is reputably 
of Exonian birth. Archbishop Baldwin, who 
died at Tyre, in 1191, while engaged on a crusade, 
was certainly a native of the city ; and so was his 
contemporary, Josephus Iscanus, "the Swan of 
Isca." Then we have Cardinal Robert Pullen, 
John Hoker, and his far more famous nephew, 
Richard Hooker. I fancy, however, that despite 
their titles, degrees, and city cradling, most of" 
these men are less widely known than many who 
were born without a silver spoon in their mouth, 
and had to force their way to fame and fortune 
against a stream of difficulty and adversity such 
as few have to encounter to-day. Better known 
to many will be such names as Blundell, a native 
of Tiverton ; Westcote, the author of the " View 
of Devonshire in 1630," who was born at Raddon, 


near Crediton ; and especially John Jewel, the 
famous bishop of Salisbury. He was born at 
Berry Narbor in 1522, and the old house may still 
be found among the hills if the tourist will ramble 
out from Ilfracombe. To no other man has a 
greater honour fallen. It was the sermons of 
Jewel which usually found a place, under lock and 
chain, on the reading desk of the church during 
the seventeenth century. These chained books 
are yet to be seen in sundry places, and afford an 
excellent insight into the condition of the people, 
religiously and educationally, three centuries and 
more ago. 

The Grenvilles, concerning whom so much is 
said by Kingsley in " Westward Ho!" occupy an 
important place, not only in the county history, 
but in that of the nation as well. The tourist will 
find it interesting to visit the church at Bideford. 
Here, in a place rendered memorable, among 
other things, as the whilom curacy of James 
Hervey, author of " Theron and Aspasia," " Medi- 
tations among the Tombs," and other works, we 
may see, not only an admirable example of a 
Norman font, but the well-preserved and instruc- 
tive tomb and recumbent effigy of Thomas Gren- 
ville ? a relative of the more famous Sir Richard, 



"one of the brightest stars in the Elizabethan 
naval galaxy, who closed a noble life in the 
stoutest sea fight ever waged." Just as the great 
Apostle, when nearing his end, exclaimed, " I have 
fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I 
have kept the faith," so the noble hero passed 
triumphantly away with a joyful and quiet mind, 
exclaiming, " I have ended my life as a true soldier 
ought to do, that hath fought for his country, 
Queen, religion, and honour." 

At Portledge, near Abbotsham, a hamlet between 
Bideford and Clovelly, one passes the home of the 
Coffins, of which family more than one has risen 
to distinction and honour. Among the number 
was one, Sir William, who had a very summary 
way of dealing with matters. On one occasion 
he threatened to bury a priest alive in the grave 
which had been prepared for a poor parishioner, 
because the offender declined to read the burial 
service over the deceased until his cow had been 
surrendered as fee. The act is said to have 
resulted in a reform, not before it was needed, in 
the matter of mortuary fees. The doughty knight 
was also Master of the Horse at the coronation 
of Anne Boleyn, and was present at The Field 

of the Cloth of Gold, Near the parish church of 



Abbotsham one may observe an ancient oak which 
has succumbed to the storms of life, and by its 
side a youthful scion planted in the Jubilee year. 

Clovelly, as the reader of Kingsley's most 
famous novel will remember, was famous as the 
ancestral home of the Carys from the days of 
Richard II. till the beginning of last century. 
The mansion adjoins the church, and a "lord's 
door" is still in existence and use on the north 
side of the chancel ; while several of the Gary 
family lie interred in the sanctuary, or have tablets 
and memorials to their memory. Among the 
more famous members of the family were Sir 
John Gary, Chief Baron of the Exchequer in 
1387, and his son, John, who was nominated 
Bishop of Exeter in 1419, but was never installed. 
I have been unable to find any allusion to, or 
explanation of, the following curious fact. On 
the floor of the chancel is a memorial to George 
Gary, in which he is represented holding a bishop's 
staff, though the reverend gentleman never rose 
higher than the office of dean. It is affirmed that 
he twice refused a bishopric, but it is not explained 
why, if such was the case he carries a crozier. 
Clearly all the problems relating to old-time 
Devon are not yet solved, 


To the student of Hebrew and the literature of 
the Old Testament few names are more familiar 
than that of Kennicott, whose Codices the com- 
mentators and lexicographers of any earlier 
generation than ours were never weary of 
quoting. Though little known by others, this 
truly learned man has won for himself an enduring 
fame for his industry and research. He was born 
at Totnes, on April 4th, 1718, his father being 
the parish clerk, and the direct representative of 
a lone line of Kennicotts, one at least of whom had 
risen to the distinction of Mayor of his native 
town. Benjamin was educated in King Edward's 
Grammar School, and developed a considerable 
talent for singing and bell-ringing. A poem com- 
posed by him attracted attention, and led to his 
being sent to Oxford, where, step by step, he 
climbed the ladder of life and the tree of knowledge, 
devoting himself especially to the study of theology 
and the language of the Old Testament. He 

O O 

examined large numbers of MSS. of the Sacred 
Text, and inspired others with his own zeal for 
their study, thus laying the foundation for a 
thorough revision of the Hebrew Text. He 
received a pension of ^200 from the Crown, and, 
in 1761, was handed his diploma of Doctor in 


Divinity. He died at the early age of sixty-six, 
on September i8th, 1783 ; but it was many years 
after his decease that his labours bore the fruit 
which it was hoped would follow. At last, how- 
ever, the day arrived when a body of Christian 
scholars was found ready to take in hand the 
great task of revising the Scriptures, and to-day 
we are enjoying the advantages of the arduous 
labours of this devoted divine. 

How much might be written about the 
painters of Devonshire Eastlake, Northcote, 
Prout, Haydon, and others ; or her literary men, 
as, for example, Sir John Bowring, the eminent 
orientalist, Praed, and Gifford ; or her men of 
science. Pengelly has recently been biographed ; 
Sir Samuel Baker is well-known as an intrepid 
explorer and sportsman, as well as an investigator ; 
while John Yonge, Thomas Fowler, Newcomin, 
and Sir W. S. Harris, have swollen the ranks of 
the Royal Society. Among the men who have 
made their mark in different departments of the 
legal profession, it will suffice to name Lords 
Chief Justice Coleridge and Fortescue divided 
in time by centuries, and thus linking the present 
with the past, Karslake, Dunning (first Lord 
Ashburton), Pollard, Judge of Common Pleas, 


and Sir W. Follett. Cookworthy, the native of 
Kingsbridge, who discovered kaolin and petuntse 
Chinese names for certain materials employed in 
the manufacture of china-ware in Devonshire, and 
made china-manufacture a possibility in his own 
neighbourhood, is worthy of honourable mention ; 
so is the Rev. W. Buckland, Dean of Westminster, 
who personally did much for science, and trans- 
mitted his tastes to posterity. But time would 
fail to tell of Bodley, founder of the Bodleian 
Library ; Carew, king of the beggars ; Copleston, 
Bishop of Landaff; the Courtenays, earls and 
bishops ; Ford, the dramatist ; Robert Hawker, 
the vicar of Morwenstow ; Bishop Stapledon, and 
many others. 

In conclusion, we must note that more than 
one man has a right to rank among the worthies 
of Devon, not indeed in virtue of his birth, but 
by reason of service rendered, and honourable 
connection with the county. Non ubi nascor, sed 
ubi pascor, sometimes decides a point of this kind. 
Foremost among such we must name Myles 
Coverdale, some time Bishop of Exeter, and trans- 
lator of the Holy Scriptures. Born in 1488, or 
thereabouts, at Coverham, in Yorkshire, he 
studied at Cambridge, and was for a time 


resident on the Continent, where his translation 
was published in 1535. Edward VI. shewed him 
favour, and in 1549, during the rebellion in the 
West of England, he acted as army chaplain with 
such efficiency and zeal that he was appointed 
coadjutor, and ultimately successor, to Bishop 
Veysey. On the death of Edward he fell under 
the ban of Mary, and though he escaped from 
her persecuting hand, the later years of his life 
were passed amidst much poverty and pain. It 
has been often averred that he resided at the 
palace at Paignton, a question upon which we 
have already touched in an earlier chapter. 
Bishop Veysey himself might also claim attention 
here. A native of Sutton Coldfield, near Birming- 
ham, he bequeathed to his native town a park, 
which to-day ranks among the most popular of 
Black Country resorts, while he has also left his 
mark in the diocese of Exeter. These must 
suffice, however, as illustrations of what might be 

H peep at IRent'0 (tavern. 

AMONG the many relics of bygone times 
which abound in this county, few equal 
and none surpass in interest the remarkable 
remains discovered a few years ago in the caves 
on the shore near Torquay. To the late Mr. 
Pengelly, F.R.S., we are principally indebted for 
our knowledge of Kent's Cavern, and from what 
he and others have written, as well as from my 
own researches, the following brief notice is 
compiled. I had the honour of Mr. Pengelly's 
personal acquaintance at the time when the 
subject was occupying so much of the attention 
of scientific men, and at the meetings of the 
Devonshire Association was privileged to hear 
him expound his theories, and see him slash at 
his adversaries in a way which was perhaps more 
vigorous than elegant. He was a robust and 
honest man, albeit somewhat hypercritical : always 
ready to detect the weak points in another's 
armour ; but, as usual with men of that particular 
mental cast, very sensitive if it were suggested that 


he had a vulnerable place in his heel. Few, save 
those who have worked either at the literature of 
ancient cave-dwellings and deposits, or at the 
bibliography of Devonshire, can form any idea 
how large a place the subject before us has 
occupied in the literature of the last quarter of a 
century. Many of the ablest scientists of our 
own and other lands have either visited the 
Cavern or expatiated on its marvels, and it will 
therefore be impossible for me to do more than 
give a brief resume of what has thus been done. 

A great deal of excitement, and not a little 
bitterness, was engendered in the days which 
immediately followed the discovery, owing to the 
calculations on the antiquity of man, which were 
based upon the deposits in the cave. It had 
been customary to regard the figures in the 
margins of our Bibles as inspired statements 
respecting the age of Adam, and anyone who 
dare assert that man had lived on the earth for 
upwards of 5,000 years was scouted as a heretic. 
In some places the stalagmitic floor, composed of 
carbonate of lime deposited during the course of 
ages by drippings from the roof of the cave, was 
twelve feet thick. This enormous layer must 
have taken ages to form, yet underneath it were 


found flint implements and other traces of human 
habitation and handiwork, which shewed that 
before the stalagmite was deposited, or during 
the period of its deposition, man had made 
the cave his abode. In the same cave, as is 
usual elsewhere, bones of the cave bears, the lion, 
fox, and other wild animals, were found, indicative 
of a condition of things in England such as can- 
not have existed for some thousands of years. 

Above the floor of stalagmite, again, were 
found, embedded in cave earth, teeth and bones 
of the rhinoceros, hyena, Irish elk, reindeer, 
elephant, horse, and cave bear ; while among 
these were intermixed needles and bodkins of 
bone, harpoons, chipped flint instruments, and 
other human remains, similar in shape and form 
to those employed by the North American Indians 
and other races. Those who have never explored 
these ancient abodes of man can scarcely conceive 
how exciting and fascinating a thing it is to get 
face to face with such relics of an unknown past. 
I have stood within the caves of Derbyshire and 
elsewhere, and seen the remains of the fire of our 
savage ancestors, beside which still lay the smooth 
stones with which he made his water boil and 
cooked his food. Similar relics were found in 


Kent's Cavern upwards of twenty years ago. In 
one place, at least, a layer of burnt wood was dis- 
covered, and along with these were remains which 
suggested that the uncultured inhabitants of the 


cave had cooked and feasted on animal flesh. 
Sir J. W. Dawson, who seems to fear for the ark 
of God if any old tradition be given up, is 
peculiarly unwilling to allow of the conclusions 
to which many students of the past have arrived, 
from a careful study of the facts which the dis- 
covery of this cavern and its pre-historic relics 
has suggested. He does, however, confess that 
the minds of British geologists have been pro- 
foundly impressed thereby in relation to the great 
antiquity of man, and admits that this cave, and 
its neighbour at Brixham, have, more than any 
other post-glacial monuments, shewn the existence 
of some animals, now extinct, up to the human age. 
We admit that Mr. Pengelly's reasonings, from 
the rate at which the stalagmite was deposited at 
a certain period, as well as from the rate of 
erosion of the neighbouring valleys, may be very 
erroneous, from the simple fact that the rate of 
progress would certainly differ at different periods ; 
but whatever other view we may take of the 
matter, it is perfectly certain that we can no 


longer regard the age of man as limited by a few 
thousand years. 

It is interesting to speculate as to the way in 
which the various animals found their way to 
these marvellous caverns. They are now by the 
sea-side, and it is assumed that the sea has always 
been very near them. Did the cave bears, then, 
float thitherward on ice-packs (which, as they 
reached our shores, became detached from the 
main body of Arctic ice), subsisting on fish and 
such animal matter as the sea was perpetually 
casting up and stranding on the shore ? Did the 
hyena and other beasts of prey make these caves 
their dens by day, and prowl forth by night in 
search of the animals which inhabited the sur- 
rounding forests and supplied their daily wants ? 
And if so, did the early man wage war with the 
lion, hyena, rhinoceros, and other huge or surly 
brutes, with the meagre weapons which he then 
possessed? If so, the chase must surely have 
been an exciting one, and man must, we should 
suppose, often have had the worst of the struggle. 
If the modern weapons scarce suffice to put him 
on an equality with some of the higher brutes, 
how unequal to us must the strife between a lion 
or an elephant, a rhinoceros or hyena, and a 


stone-armed man appear. But the hunters of 
those days were doubtless a sturdy race, and they 
would make up in muscle, sureness of aim, and 
force of percussion, what they lacked by reason of 
their ignorance of powder and shot. 

One of the most remarkable points to be noted 
in relation to the cave near Torquay, is the fact 
that evidence is afforded by its treasures of the 
existence of man in Devonshire from the age 
known as paleolithic, through the neolithic to the 
bronze age, and then on to the age of iron. Thus 
there is a practically unbroken chain from the 
present time right back to the old stone age. 
Relics from this early period have also been found 
in the valley of the Axe, in the beds of several 
Devonshire rivers and streams, on the moors, in 
the peat bogs, and among the remains of the 
submerged forests in Barnstaple Bay. 

You enter the Kent's Hole by a low, narrow 
passage, some seven feet wide and five feet high, 
and find yourself within a vast cavern something 
like two hundred yards in length. The main 
chamber is surrounded by a labyrinth of winding 
corridors and smaller caverns, the floor of which is 
in many places still covered by stalagmite ; while 
stalactites, formed by the perpetual dripping of 


water from the roof, charged with lime, held in 
solution, glitter above you. 


besides those at Torquay and Brixham, exist in 
Devonshire, and are worthy of inspection. In 
the limestone caverns at Oreston, in the parish 
of Plymstock, bones were found before Kent's 
Cavern had been discovered, and it was this 
discovery, as Mr. Worth remarks, that formed 
the subject of careful investigation among scientific 
men, and lead to a new departure in geological 
research. The limestone cliffs here reach a re- 
markable height ; and the cave, which is among 
the quarries whence the materials for the magni- 
ficent Plymouth breakwater were obtained, is 
seventy feet wide, twenty feet long, and ten feet 
high. One writer has remarked that a complete 
museum of fossil bones and teeth, belonging to the 
elephant, hyena, tiger, and other beasts of prey, 
has been found here ; while the jaw of a horse, 
encrusted with stalagmite, was also discovered in 
the floor. 

In 1880, I visited the Pixie's Cavern, at 
Chudleigh, but, alas ! the pixies had all fled to 
haunts which are less accessible to the fumes of 


the cigar and the brandy bottle. These modern 
abominations the pixy cannot away with. The 
cavern is still worthy a visit, despite the loss of 
romance ; and if to-day the visitor cannot bring 
away an elephant's tusk, or the tooth of an hyena 
worn down with the constantly grinding of bones 
(as is the case with a specimen in my own 
possession), he may be interested to learn that 
here also cave mammalian remains have been 

Thus even the dens and caves of the earth are 
found capable of yielding up treasures for the 
enlightenment of man, and by such means is it that 
we are by degrees arriving at the truth respecting 
the ascent of man and his age upon the earth. 
Few chapters in his history have a greater 

Xiterar\> (Sui&es anfc Cbarts. 

THOSE who have so far familiarized them- 
selves with the peculiarities of the past in 
Devonshire, may perhaps be grateful for some 
hints, in conclusion, respecting the best authors 
and works to be consulted, with a view to a yet 
fuller acquaintance with the subjects which have 
been touched upon in the foregoing pages. It 
may be said, at the outset, that we are indebted 
chiefly to some half-dozen writers for all that is 
accessible to the general reader respecting the 
archaeology, antiquities, folk-lore, and church- 
lore, of Devonshire. We may specially mention 
Worth, Davidson, Wright, Freeman, Ellacombe, 
Oliver, and Bray. 

It is now just half a century since a first attempt 
was made to compile a bibliography of Devon- 
shire. In the year 1847 there appeared in the 
Literary Chronicle, a catalogue of books relating 
to this county, which may be said to have paved 
the way for a fuller, more accurate, and scientific 
compilation. Yet the work progressed very 


tardily. In 1852, it is true, Davidson published, 
at Exeter, a Devonshire bibliography ; but thirty 
years after (1882) Mr. Wright explained the need 
of an up-to-date publication, and three years later 
(1885) wrote a plea for an accurate bibliography. 
He was himself meanwhile working diligently at 
the Western Antiquary, and the Plymouth Lib- 
rary, and from the pages of the former, and the 
local section in the catalogue of the latter, the 
student will be able to obtain many aids in his in- 
vestigation. During 1 885, and the following years, 
Dredge published an account of the Devonshire 
booksellers ; following up his work, in 1889-90, 
by publishing the first and second sheaves of his 
bibliography. In 1892, Wright issued his cata- 
logue of the Lending Library, in connection with 
the Borough Free Library of Plymouth, and year 
by year since then the annual report of the 
Borough Library has contained a list of additions 
to county literature. With these works before 
him, the enquirer will be able to do all he 

It is quite needless for me, in a popular work 
like this, to give a systematic digest of books on 
the Devonshire of the past. I shall be content, 
therefore, to note some of the more remarkable of 


the volumes, which have been, or may be, con- 
sulted for a full and impartial survey of old-time 
traditions, antiquities, and lore. He who would 
know the lives of the most famous men of the 
past, must consult the classical work of Prince, 
entitled " Worthies of Devon." I refer to the 
quarto edition of 1810, in one volume. Prince 
himself, and later worthies, have been remembered 
by other biographers, and the Transactions of the 
Devonshire Association are a perfect treasure- 
house for this, and almost every other department 
of local research. The volumes of Transactions 
extend over a good part of the last half century, 
and are absolutely indispensable. They appear 
year by year in a large octavo volume, and are 
issued to subscribers for the year. In this con- 
nection I may mention Clarke's " Remarks on 
Devon Worthies," issued in 1874. 

Devonshire has been often " visited," delineated, 
and described. Thus we have the " Visitation of 
Devonshire in 1564." This may be seen, with 
additions from the earlier " Visitation of 1531," in 
Colby's edition, in one volume, octavo, 1881. 
The "Visitation of 1620" is found in the sixth 
volume of the Harleian Society's publications, 

and appeared in one volume, octavo, in 1872. 



In Magna Britannia we have Lyson's " Devon- 
shire," in two quarto volumes (1822), and between 
it and the appearance of Worth's " History of 
Devonshire," in 1886, many other volumes of 
various kinds saw the light. Mr. Worth's 
volume is, however, the handiest compendium 
we possess, and though not free from slight 
blemishes, is by a master hand. Indeed the 
author is one of the most indefatigable of Devon's 
literary sons. His name must ever be held in 
reverence for the splendid service he has rendered, 
not only. to literature, but also to science. Many 
of our most accurate reports on the geology of 
Devonshire are from his pen ; while his con- 
tributions to the history and archaeology of the 
county are legion. Leaving his scientific memoirs 
unnamed, we may mention his work on " Pre- 
historic Devon," published at Plymouth, 1881-2 ; 
his contribution on " Saxon Devon," in the Tran- 
sactions of the Plymouth Institute, in 1882-3 ; his 
" History of Devonport," published in 1870, and 
his " Guide to Devonshire" (1880). Mr. Worth 
is our leading authority on all that relates to 
historic Plymouth and its antiquities ; in evidence 
of which I may mention that I have notes of some 
twenty memoirs and volumes from his pen 


relating to Plymouth and the surrounding district 

Before we pass away from Devonshire as a 
whole, however, to consider some local details, it 
may be well to mention one or two other volumes 
which contain much useful information. These 
include Britton and Brayley's " Topographical and 
Historical Description of Devon," and Polwhele's 
" Historical Views of Devonshire." Many of 
the views must, however, be received with 

The monastic houses of Devonshire have been 
carefully treated, as have the ecclesiastical edifices 
also. In 1779, Mr. Jones published an account of 
4< Religious Houses in Devon and Cornwall." 
Chanter and Rowe followed at a long interval, the 
first with an account of Cluniac houses in Devon, 
published at Plymouth, and the other with details 
respecting Cistercian houses in the same county. 
This also was published in Plymouth, in 1887. 
Davidson has very carefully studied the respective 
monasteries, and those of his papers which have 
not been reprinted, or are inaccessible in any 
other form, may be read with great profit in the 
Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 
Then we have Oliver's " Monasteries of Devon- 


shire/' issued in 1841, at Exeter, and followed, in 
1857, by his " History of the Catholic Religion." 

Under the heading of antiquities we find such 
works as the following : Shortt's " Druidical 
Remains in Devonshire," published at Exeter, 
with which may be compared many of the chapters 
in Mrs. Bray's work on the u Borders of the 
Tamar and Tavy." It will suffice to say that all 
such writings must be received with caution. 
With " Devonshire Antiquities," by Goose, we 
may also compare a volume on " Monumental and 
Memorial Sculpture of Devon," by Rogers, pub- 
lished at Exeter, in 1877. Chanter's " First Saxon 
Devonshire Bishopric," introduces us to questions 
relating purely to the Church, and in order to know 
the churches of Devon we must either visit them 
personally, or consult the Transactions of the 
Archaeological and Antiquarian Society. The 
volumes issued by this society are absolutely 
invaluable to the church antiquary. Here again, 
in a lesser degree, the Transactions of the Devon- 
shire Association must be consulted, as well as 
such volumes as Hine's " Moorland and Border 
Churches of Devon," published at Plymouth. 

Passing by Westcote's " View of Devonshire in 
1630," of which a reprint appeared in Exeter in 


1845; Kerslake's ''Mercians in Devon and 
Cornwall," a volume on " Bygone Days in Devon 
and Cornwall," and many other miscellaneous 
collections, we may notice one or two accessible 
volumes dealing with individual cities, towns, or 
districts. Foremost we may place the volume on 
Exeter, by Professor Freeman, in the Historic 
Towns' Series. Exeter has naturally occupied 
much of the attention of antiquaries and historians. 
Justice can only be done to this interesting city by 
a lengthened stay in the vicinity, with ready 
access to her archives and libraries. The " History 
and Description of the City of Exeter," by Jenkins, 
and the "History of the City of Exeter," by 
Oliver, may be mentioned as supplying much 
useful information. Numerous modern guide 
books also give a compendious account of the city 
generally, while the volumes devoted to the 
architectural and other features of the cathedral 
are legion. I may mention two: ''The History 
and Antiquities of Exeter Cathedral, with Anec- 
dotes of its Bishops," by J. Britton, a quarto 
volume with numerous plates (ed. 1826). "Exeter 
Cathedral and its Restoration," a volume by 
T. B. Worth, with photographic illustrations and 
plan, in octavo. In 1877 appeared an interesting 


volume by J. Cossins, entitled, " Reminiscences of 
Exeter Fifty Years Since " (post octavo) ; while, in 
1886, Mr. Commins, the well-known Exeter 
bookseller, issued an admirable facsimile of the 
rare map of Exeter in the sixteenth century, which 
had appeared in Braun's u Civitates Orbis 
Terarrum." This very interesting plan of the 
ancient city shows it surrounded by its walls with 
v the gateways standing ; Rougemont Castle, with 
moat and drawbridge ; the northern tower of the 
cathedral with a spire, since removed ; the gate- 
ways of the cathedral close are clearly shewn, and 
Old Exe Bridge, built upon piers, now superseded 
by the more modern structure, forms an interesting 
object in the foreground. In 1863, a volume 
appeared from the pen of J. Gidley, containing 
notices of .royal visits to Exeter from A.D. 49 to 
A.D. 1863. Lastly, in relation to the Cathedral 
City, I may mention Crocker's " Sketches of Old 
Exeter," with descriptive text, 1886; Harding's 
" Ecclesiastical Edifices of Exeter," in two parts ; 
Hoker's " Antique Description and Account of 
Exeter," published in the city in 1765; Izacke's 
" Antiquities of Exeter," 1723; Parfitt's " Arch- 
aeological Discoveries in Exeter," 1878; Oliver's 
"Bishops of Exeter and History of the 


Cathedral,". 1861 ; Freeman's " Architectural 
History of Exeter Cathedral," (Exeter 1873, and 
later editions); Hewett's " History of the Cathedral 
Church of St. Peter," and his " History and Des- 
cription of Exeter Cathedral" (Exeter 1852). 
There is also an account by Dymond of the 
" Heraldic Discovery in Exeter Cathedral," pub- 
lished at Plymouth in 1877; Fulford's "Re- 
marks on Stained Glass in Exeter Cathedral," 
which appeared in 1845, a d a ''Guide to the 
Cathedral," by S. W., published in 1839, with 
many other similar volumes far too numerous to 
mention. In the new series of volumes dealing 
with our national cathedrals, Exeter has received 
careful attention, so that there is no lack of 
accessible works. 

In point of interest and importance Plymouth 
comes next, and here we must specially seek the 
aid of Mr. Worth. His histories of Plymouth, 
Devonport, and the story of the siege of Plymouth 
are well-known. To these we may add Rowe's 
" Ecclesiastical History of Old Plymouth" (1876); 
Jowitt's " History of Plymouth," in one quarto 
volume, published in 1873, an d Mr. Wright's 
book, which appeared some six years later. The 
Western Antiquary and Transactions of the 


Plymouth Institute (opened eighty years ago) will 
supply the rest. For Totnes, we may consult 
Woodley's " Antiquities of Totnes," published by 
Mr. Cotton, and a " Sketch of Totnes Church," 
by Mr. Windeatt. Stirling's " History of Newton 
Abbott and Newton Bushell " (published in 1830 
at the former place), is the old standard authority 
on these parishes, but Worth has done recent 
work here also. 

Lieut.-Col. Harding, in 1845, published at Tiver- 
ton a history of that town with illustrations. The 
work was issued in two volumes, royal quarto. 
Gribble, in 1830, dealt with " Memorials of Barn- 
staple," in an octavo volume. For Ashburton in 
the 1 5th and i6th centuries we may turn to the 
Extracts from the Churchwardens' Accounts from 
1479 to 1580, published in an octavo volume in 
1870. Each of the other towns Torquay, Dart- 
mouth, Okehampton, Bideford, Crediton, and 
others can shew a goodly array of compilations, 
some by authors of repute, and others by that too 
little esteemed individual " the local antiquary." 
Valuable as those works are, and necessary for a 
perfect knowledge of county history, they cannot 
be enumerated here, nor will the reader require a 
fuller list unless he is a specialist, in which case we 


may refer him to the bibliographical works already 
referred to. He who has mastered the principal 
of the foregoing volumes may pride himself on 
having obtained a by no means despicable know- 
ledge of this delightful county as it was in the days 
of auld lang syne. 

Abbeys and Priories, 196 seq., 243 

Abbobsham, 225 

Accounts, Churchwardens', 91 seq. 

Adder's Meat, 125 

Altars, 41, 86 

Ambon or Screen, 190 

Anchor Rock, 96 

Anglo-Saxon Church, 152, 180 

Antiquities of the Church, 24 seq. 

Archbishops, 223 

Architecture, 24 seq. 

Armada, 105 

Art of Printing, 200 

Arum, 125 

Ashburton, 20, 69, 82, 142, 248 

Lord, 143, 228 
Ashe, 210 
Asser, Bishop, 152 
Atherington, 38 
Authors, 239 seq. 

Axminster, 25, 32, 34, 57, 65, 210 
Axmouth, 26 

Bachelors' Buttons, 128 

Bairdown, 11 

Baldwin, Archbishop, 223 

,, de Brionne, 27 
Banners and Arms, 194 
Barns of Crediton, 139 
Barnstaple, 207 
Battle Abbey, 29 
Bay and Rosemary, 102 
Becky Falls, 20 
Belle Tor, 11 
Belston Church, 27 
Benedictines, 196 seq. 
Berry Narbor, 27, 224 
Berry Pomeroy, 43 
Bibliographical Notes, 239 seq. 
Bickleigh Court, 27 
Bicton, 116 

Bideford, 32, 81, 224, 248 
Bigbury, 32, 86 
Bishopric, 152 seq. 

Bishops Clyst, 115, 166 
,, Nympton, 168 
,, Tawton, 166 

Teignton, 166 
Bishops and Archbishops 

Asser, 152 

Baldwin, 223 

Brantingham, 38, 85, 191 

Bothe, 191 

Bronescombe, 77, 91, 161 

Courtenay, 39 

Coverdale, 26, 100, 165, 229 

Grandisson, 78, 157, 166, 190 

Jewel, 224 

Lacy, 163 

Langton, 223 

Marshall, 78 

Quivil, 78, 163, 190 

Stafford, 77 

Stapledon, 77, 115 

Voysey(Veysey), 163,169,230 

Warelwast, 78, 188, 208, 209 
Bishopstools, 152 seq. 
Bishopstowe, 166 
Blundells, 142, 145, 223 
Bodley (Bodleian), 229 
Books on Devon, 239 seq. 
Bovey Tracey, 69 
Bowerman's Nose, 8 
Bradninch, 40 
Brampford Speke, 32 
Branscombe, 29 
Brasses and Tombs, 74 
Brixham, 234 

Briwere, William de, 205, 212 
Buckfastleigh, 303 
Buckland, 198 
Burials, 99 seq. 
Bygone Worthies, 217 seq. 

Cadbury, 5, 58 
Calvary, 40, 41 
Carews, 27, 83 
Carys, 206, 226 



Castles of Devonshire, 42 seq. 
Cathedral (Exeter), 31, 34, 36, 41, 

77, 185 seq,, 197, 245 
Caves, 231 
Celtic Influence, 17 
Chagford, 111 
Chests in Churches, 103 
Choir Screen, 190 
Choky Bone, 67, 75 
Chudleigh, 109, 161, 173, 237 
Chumleigh, 37 
Church Antiquities, 24 

and Place-names, 23 

before Reformation, 100 

Chests, 103 

Crypts, 28, 208 

Dedications (See Saints) 

Lore, 99, 178 

Plate, 100 

Pulpits, 32, 34, 66 
Churches as Garrisons, 61 seq. 

Collegiate, 37, 178, 202 
Peculiar; 178 seq. 
Pre- Norman, 180 
Pro-Reformation, 100 
Churchwardens' Accounts, 91 seq. 
Churston, 181 

Cistercians, 196 seq., 209, 243 
Clovelly, 226 
Cluniac Houses, 243 
Clyst, 115, 166 
Coffin family, 225 
Colcombe, 75 
Cold Harbour, 6 
Coleridge Church, 37, 86 
family, 79, 220 

Collegiate Churches, 37, 178, 202 
Collumpton, 40 
Colyton, 67, 75, 80 
Combe Martin, 39 
Communion, 105 
Courtenays, 39, 49, 67, 75, 115 
Coverdale, 26, 165, 229 
Crediton, 4, 28, 88, 113, 114, 138, 

154, 156, 202 
Crispin, Thos., 144 
Cromwell, 58, 62 
Crowdy Kit, 134 
Crypts, 28, 208 
Cucking Stool, 95 
Curious Tenures, 107 seq. 

Daccombe, 97 
Dartington, 21 

Dartmouth, 36, 38, 51, 52, 82, 85 

Dawlish, 61, 181 

De Briwere, 57, 205, 212, 213 

Decorations, 102 

Dedications (See Saints) 

De Mohun, 210 

Denbury, 6, 58, 175 

Devon, Earls of, 49, 67, 75 

Dewerstone, 9 

Dittisham, 96 

Doddeton, 213 

Dolbury, 5 

Dominicans, 214 

Drake family, 76 ; 80, 199, 216, 222 

Drewsteignton, 2, 9 

Duchess of Orleans, 31 

Ducking Stool Bridge, 95 

Duke of Somerset, 51 

Dunning, Lord Ashburton, 143, 


Dunkeswell, 212 
Dunscombe, 144 

Earl of Londonderry, 31 

Morley, 57 
Earls of Devon, 49, 67, 75 
Ecclesiastical Architecture, 24 
Fees, 104 

,, See Church 

Episcopal Throne, 78 
Epitaphs, 74 seq. 
Ermington, 86 
Exe, 17 

Exeter, 28, 30, 34, 35, 36, 41, 46, 
64, 77, 91, 112, 149, 159, 172, 
185, 246 

(See Cathedral) 
Extinct Animals, 233 

Facts and Fancies, 170 seq. 
Fairfax, 66, 68 seq. 
Famous Yew-trees, 175 
Fees of Ecclesiastics, 104 
Fenton, 39 
Filleigh, 80, 81 
Flavel, 88 

Flint implements, 233 
Flower- Lore, 124 seq. 
Flowers in Churches, 102 
Floyer Hayes, 118 
Folk Etymology, 7 
,, lore, 124 seq. 
Fonts, 30 seq. 
Font-tapers, 106 



Ford Abbey, 212 
Ford, the Dramatist, 69 
French ruse, 72 
Frescoes and paintings, 40 
Friars and monks, 196 seq. 
Friar's Cap, 131 
Fritillary, 129, 170 

Garrisoned Churches, 61 seq. 

Gavelkind, 120 

Gidleigh, 58 

Gifford, 143 

Githa (Gytha), 29, 206 

Granville, Sir John, 141 

Grammar Schools, 137 seq. 

Grants and Tenures, 107 

Great Fulford, 69 

Grenvilles, 198, 224 

Guild Merchants, 204 

Haccombe, 84, 178, 183 

Harberton, 38 

Harford, 89 

Hartland Abbey, 35, 87, 206 

Hat Laws, 97 

Hatherleigh, 6 

Heavitree, 2 

EJemyock, 57 

Henbury, 18 

Henrietta, 30 

Herb Robert, 128 

Herbs in churches, 103 

Hervey, James, iJ24 

Hey tor, 13 

Hoker, 47, 174, 223, 238 

Holsworthy, 33 

Honeyditches, 2 

Honiton, 9, 39 

Hooker, Richard. 223 

Horseshoes on Churchdoors, 183 

Horwood, 183 

Hourglass, 35, 102 

Iconoclasm, 103 
Ilfracombe, 32, 34 
Ilsington, 69 
Influence of Church, 23 
Ireland, Dr., 143 
Isle of Lundy, 58, 71 

Jewel, Bishop, 224 
Judas Candles, 106 

Ken ton, 38 

Kent's Cavern, 231 seq. 

Killatree, 19 

Killeton, 19 

King of the Beggars, 27 

Kingsbridge, 144 

Kingsley, Chas., 222, 224, 226 

Kingswear, 52 

Knowle, 19 

La pulpy tte, 190 
Langton, Archbishop, 223 
Lazar houses, 170 seq. 
Lazarus bell, 130, 170 
Leland, 138 
Leofric, 159, 186, 197 
Leprosy, 130, 170 
Levver, 131 
Lifton, 113 
Literary Guides, 239 
Little Choky Bone, 67, 75 
Londonderry, Earl of, 31 
Lord Briwere, 57, 205, 212 
Lundy Island, 58, 71 
Lydford, 20, 58 
Lynton, 20 

Mamhead, 176 

Manaton, 8 

Marisco, 58, 72 

Marwood, 39 

Heavy, 27 

Membury, 95 

Merripit, 11 

Merrivale, 11 

Merton, 115 

Military Lore, 105, 194 

Milton Abbot, 93, 110 

Minstrels' Gallery, 194 

Misereres, 38, 194 

Mod bury, 207 

Molland, 118 

Monks and Monasteries, 196 seq., 


Monuments, 67, 74 seq. 
Moretonhampstead, 10, 21, 109 
Morley, Earl of, 57 
Morthoe, 87 
Musbury, 80 
Myles Coverdale, 26, 100, 165, 


Kelly, 19 
Kennicott, Dr., 227 

Napoleon at Torbay, 68 
Nectan, Saint, 88, 207 



Newenham Abbey, 209 
Newton Abbot, 206, 248 

Bushell, 248 
Norman Remains, 25 
North Molton, 34, 41 
Noteworthy Fonts, 30 *eq. 
Nymet, 168 
Nympton, 168 

Oaken chests, 103 
Oakhampton, 14, 17 
Ockington, 15, 21 
Ockment, 15, 21 
Okehampton, 15, 54, 248 - 
Old-time Punishments, 94 

,, School-life, 137 seq. 
Oreston Cave, 237 
Organs, 192, 194 
Orgin's tea, 131 
Orleans, Duchess of 31, 
Otterton, 207 
Ottery St. Mary, 62, 79 

Paignton, 26, 108, 164 

Pair of Organs, 192, 194 

Palaces of Bishops, 152 seq. 

Paleolithic Man, 236 

Parish Registers, 91 seq. 

Patteson family, 39 

Peculiar Tenures and Grants, 107, 


,, Churches, 178 seq. 
Pengelly, Wm., 231 
Penny come-quick, 19 
Peter's Farthings, 94, 110 
Pillory, 94 
Pilton, 35, 102, 172 
Pinhoe, 41, 117 
Pitfalls of Etymology, 12 
Pixies, 133, 237 
Place-names, 1, 16, 160, 170 
Place-rhymes, 3 
Plant-names, 124 seq. 
Plymouth, 63, 67, 247 
Plympton, 4, 56, 172, 208 
Plymtree, 33, 40 
Pomeroys, 43 seq. 
Portledge, 225 
Potheridge, 115 
Powderham, 38, 49, 66 
Pre-historic man, 232 
Premonstratensians, 205 
Pre-Norman Churches, 180 
Pre-Reformation , 100 

Prince, 45, 241 
Priories and Abbeys, 208 seq. 
Pulpits, 32, 34, 66 
Punishments in Olden Times, 94 

Registers, 103 
Religious Houses, 196, 243 
Revelstoke, 67 
Reynolds, Sir Joshua, 216 
Richard, 46, 53, 112, 113, 118 
Rivers and place-names, 17, 20 
Rosemary and Bays, 102 
Rougemount, 45, 246 
Ruddy soil, 46 
Ruined Castles, 42 seq. 

Saints and Dedications : 

Andrew, 63, 82 

Boniface, 156 

Budeaux, 67, 81 

Clement, 68 

David, 152 

Eustatius, 202 

Gabriel, 77, 189 

Giles, 30 

James, 35 

John, 27, 177, 188 

Lawrence, 32, 37, 86 

Mary, 27, 28, 31, 32, 37, 66, 
158, etc. 

Mary Magdalene, 172, 174, 
189, 207 

Michael, 29, 39, 63 

Nectan, 88, 207 

Nicholas, 26, 28 

Olave, 29 

Pancras, 29 

Paul, 31, 188 

Peter, 27, 39 

Petrock, 92, 94, 101 

Saviour, 38, 85, 88 

Stephen, 28 

Thomas, 64 

Wynfrid, 156 
Saxon place-names, 20 
School- Life, 137 seq. 
Screens, 35, 36, 190, 194 
Sedilia, 77 
Shillingford, 22 
Shute, 177 
Sidbury, 30 
Sidmouth, 26 
Singular Churches, 178 
Slapton, 31, 38, 115 


2 55 

Snowdrift, 134 
Somerset, Duke of, 51 
South Molton, 33, 34, 113 

Spadepenny, 111 
Speke, 32 
Spinster Rock, 7 
Stained Glass, 37 
Stannaries, 59, 112 
Stapledon, Bishop, 77, 115, 190 

Walter, 151 
Stoke Fleming, 85 

,, Gabriel, 177 

,, St. Nectan, 33, 35, 41, 83, 


Stowe, 21 
Study of place-names, 6 

Tallaton, 111 
Tavistock, 140, 199, 207 
Teignmouth, 26 
Tenures and grants, 107 seq. 
Throne, Episcopal, 78 
Tiverton, 55, 66, 76, 87, 145, 248 
Torquay, 26,31, 180, 231 
Torre Abbey, 205 

Mohun, 31, 119 
Torrington, 57, 70, 118 
Totnes, 4, 36, 38, 50, 172, 218, 

227, 248 
Townstall, 68 
Tracy, 6, 87 
Tumbrel, 96 

Ugbrooke House, 84 

Vandalism, 103 
Venville, 120 
Vestments, 100 

Veysey (Voysey), Bishop, 163, 
169, 230 

Wadham, 30 

Wake of the monks, 196 

Warelwast, Bishop, 78, 188, 208, 


Wearing hats, 97 
Welsh, Vicar, 64 
Wembury, 68 
Westcote, 223 

Western Antiquary, 240, 247 
Westofer, William, 76 
Whitchurch, 180 
Whitepot, 108 
Wishing Tree, 43 
Wistman's Wood, 2, 18, 178 
Withy combe, 112, 177 
Woolborough, 206 
Worth, Mr. , 242 seq. , 247 
Worthies of Devon, 216 seq , 233 
\V right. Wm., 239, 240 
Wynfrid, 156 

Yealmpton, 86 
Yevvton, 114 
Yew-trees, 175 
Yonge, Dr. James, 108 

Zeal Monachorum, 204 





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" A happy and useful addition to current literature." Norfolk Chronicle. 

" The book is a very fascinating one, and it is specially interesting to 
students of history as showing the vast changes which, by gradual course oi 
development have been brought about both in the principles and practice of 
the law." The Evening Gazette. 

The Church Bells of Holderness. 


Grown 8jo, cloth extra. Only 300 copies printed. 

CONTENTS : History Legends Marriage Bell Passing 
Bell Priest's Bell Litany Bell Sermon Bell Saunce Bell 
Sanctus Bell Sacring Bell Jesus Bell Howslinge Bell The 
Arc Bell Curfew Bell Harvest Bell Pancake Bell Christ- 
ma> Day Good Friday Easter Sunday- -All Hallows' 
Royal Oak Day Gowrie Plot Gunpowder Plot Change 
Ringing Dedication of Churches Inscriptions on the Church 
Bells of Holderness Dedication of Church Bells Index. 

" To all who are inteiested in church bells Mr. Park's book will afford 
interesting reading." Huh limes. 

" A capital volume includes much out-of-the-way information on the bell 
in history, legend, and custom, and cannot fail to entertain all who take an 
interest in the church bells.' 3 Leamington Advertiser. 

" Mr. Park's volume makes a welcome contribution to antiquarian 
literature.'' Hu I ^h>istian Vo ce. 

Essex in the Days of Old. 

Demy 8vo> cloth gilt, fs. 6d. Numerous illustrations. 

CONTENTS : Witchcraft in Essex Charles Dickens and Chigwell 
Hadleigh Castle Daniel Defoe in E^sex Harbottle Grimston, Puritan 
and Patriot In the Reign of Terror John Locke and Gates The Homes 
and Haunts of Elizabeth Fry The Notorious Dean of Bocking and the 
" Eikon Basilike" Barking Abbey The Round Church of Little Maple- 
stead Waltham Holy Cross Queen Elizabeth in Essex The Salmons 
and Haddocks of Leigh The Dutch Refugees and the Bay and Say Trade 
John Strype and Leyton The Brass of Archbishop Harsnett Old 
Southend The Bartlow Hills Index. 

"An extremely interesting and useful contribution to historic literature." 
East Anglian Times. 

" An attractive volume." Norfolk Chronicle. 

" The volume is choicely illustrated, and should attract readers far beyond 
the county of which it treats." Birmingham Daily Gazette. 

" It is a readable and useful book." The 7imes. 

The Story of Mollie. 


Crown 8vo. Price js. 6d. 

"A rather unusual child is the subject of this pretty story. Troubled 
with a highly-sensitive brain, and exceedingly self-contained, the poor 
child's actions are generally misunderstood until a grown-up cousin appears 
on the scene, and a bond of sympathy is established. The young man 
seems instinctively to read the child's character, and thenceforward happi- 
ness is the lot of the despised little Mollie. Not for long, however. A 
catastrophe happens, and the quaint child-mind undergoes a terrible 
struggle, out of which she issues scathless. There are other characters in 
the story, all of whom play their parts well. A perusal of the book leaves 
in the mind a picture of a little child's soul struggling upwards through 
darkness and worldly surroundings. The book is well written, and, as is 
usual with this firm, beautifully produced." Liverpool Mercury. 

"The volume is one on which the author may be congratulated. It is 
full of charm, and, though written with studied simplicity, is clever beyond 
the ordinary, and obviously comes from one who has thought much on 
the mysteries and perplexities of existence." Birmingham Daily Gazette. 

"It is a touching picture of neglected child-life, which does not arouse the 
sympathy and affection of those who ought to cherish and study it. ... 
The real merit of the story lies in the way in which the very delicate and 
unusual relationship is managed. Any failure in this would have ruined 
the story, which is, as it reads, unaffectedly strong and well written." 
Leeds Mercury. 

" No one can fail to enjoy the sweetness of ' The Story of Mollie,' nor to 
appreciate the delicate and subtle grace with which the author has told it. 
It does one good to find among so many worth 1 ess stories of to-day one 
that embodies so much sweetness and truth as well as strength." Boston 

Old Grimsby. 

Demy 8vo, cloth gilt, js, 6d. Numerous illustrations. 

CONTENTS : The Old Town British and Roman Times The Anglo- 
Saxon Period The Danish Period Grimsby after the Conquest- -The Old 
Borough The Old Church Early Trade and Commerce Sports and 
Pastimes Grimsby Families and Notabilities Members of Parliament 
Mayors Condition of the People The Marshes Elections Religious 
and other Institutions Educational Bibliography Index. 

"Mr. Shaw's volume is one of the greatest interest to all in any way 
connected with Grimsby and at all desirous of knowing something about 
the town, and its government in the old, old days, a picturesque period and 
a time alive with that kind of reminiscence always so acceptable when old 
things have passed away and all things become new." Grtmsby News. 

"Not only to the reader who is specially concerned with Grimsby, but 
also to the historical student, the book comes as a boon. Clearness of 
diction, breadth of view, and authentic siftings from the best authorities, 
render the work an important contribution to the history of England itself." 
7 he Eastern Daily 'telegraph. 

" An interesting book." Eastern Morning News. 

The Red, Red Wine. 


Grown 8vo, 330 pp. A Portrait of the Author and other Illustrations. 
Price 3s. 6d. 

" This, as its name implies, is a temperance story, and is told in the 
lamented author's most graphic style. We have never read anything 
so powerful since * Danesbury House,' and this book in stern and 
pathetic earnestness even excels that widely-known book. It is 
worthy a place in every Sunday School and village library ; and, as 
the latest utterance of one whose writings are so deservedly popular, 
it is sure of a welcome. It should give decision to some whose views 
about Local Opinion are hazy." Joyful News. 

" The story is one of remarkable power." The Temperance Record. 

"An excellent and interesting story." The Temperance Chronicle. 

" This is a powerful story, the last from the pen of an indefatigable 
worker and true friend of the total abstinence cause. The scene of 
the o'er true tale is laid in East Yorkshire, the author's native district, 
which he knew and loved so well. The characters appear to be drawn 
from life, and each chapter has a vivid and terrible interest. The 
friendship between old Aaron Bingham and Little Kitty is touching. 
The tale of trouble, sorrow, and utter ruin wrought by the demon of 
strong drink might well rouse every man, woman, and child to fight 
the destroyer, which, in the unfolding of the story, we see enslaving 
minister and people, shaming the Christian Church, breaking hearts 
all round, and wrecking the dearest hopes of individuals and families. 
A striking and pitiful tale, not overdrawn." Alliance News. 

Price Is., post free 

If anyone wishes to become a Barrister, he should read to use the 
words of the London Globe "a, pleasant little volume," entitled 

In the Temple. 


This book opens with a chapter on the history of the Temple. Next 
follows an account of the Knight Templars. The Story of the Devil's 
Own is given in a graphic manner. A Sketch of Christmas in the 
Temple is included. In an entertaining manner the reader is informed 
how to become a Templar, the manner of keeping terms is described, 
and lastly the work concludes with a chapter on call parties. 

This work was well received by the critical press. It was described 
by the Manchester Examiner, as "An entertaining little book." In 
the Law Times the contents are said to be "amusing and interesting 
sketches." Said the Gentlewoman, it consists of "Pleasant gossip 
about the barristers' quarter." 

A Lawyer's Secrets. 

Author of "The Children of Chance," etc. 

Price Is. , post free. 

" A volume of entertaining stories. . . . The book has much the 
same interest as a volume of detective stories, except that putting the 
cases in a lawyer's mouth gives them a certain freshness. It is well 
written, and makes a capital volume for a railway journey." The 

" A very entertaining volume." Birmingham Daily Gazette. 

The Doomed Ship ; or, The Wreck in the 
Arctic Regions. 

Crown 8vo. , Elegantly Bound, Gilt extra, js. 6d. 

"There is no lack of adventures, and the writer has a matter-of-fact way 
of telling them." Spectator. 

" * The Doomed Ship,' by William Hurton, is a spirited tale of adventures 
in the old style of sea-stories. Mr. Hurton seems to enter fully into the 
manliness of sea life." Idler. 

"It is not surprising to learn that the Arctic boom has created a great 
demand for books of this class, and that the volume before us in particular 
is selling rapidly. It is entitled ' The Doomed Ship, or the Wreck in 
the Arctic Regions.' By William Hurton. (London : William Andrew; 
and Co., 5, Farringdon Avenue, E.G. Three Shillings and Sixpence). 
It is of general interest, but it is written in an attractive style, nicely 
printed, and handsomely bound. Brimful of adventures in the ice-bound 
regions of the North, it also gives a great deal of information which the 
reading public are taking a great interest in since Dr. Nansen's exploits 
have been brought before the world. The story is told in the form of a 
narrative by the nephew of the captain of the ' good barque Lady Emily, 
chartered from Hull to Tromso, in Holland.' The vessel sailed on a 
Friday an unlucky day in the eyes of superstitious sailors, and which to 
their minds accounted for the dire experiences which afterwards befell the 
vessel and the crew. The vessel was laden with coals and salt, and, after 
leaving Tromso, was to proceed to St. Petersburg to ship timber and deals 
for the return voyage. She had twenty-two hands, and at Tromso took on 
board a passenger for Copenhagen, in the person of a young Danish lady, 
Oriana Neilsen by name. Chepini, an Italian lad, in revenge for being 
flogged by the captain's orders, so manipulated the compass that the ship 
was taken hopelessly out of her course. Chepini is hung up to the yard 
arm. The vessel is at the time surrounded by icebergs, a gale springs up, 
and she is forced on to one of the bergs and remains fast by the bow, 
while a mutiny occurs among the crew, which is not quelled till the 
mutineers are killed, as well as the captain and cook. Oriana plays a 
noble part in the affair, and the nephew of the captain and she take 
command of the remainder of the crew, now consisting only of " Blackbird 
Jim " and an Irishman and a Scotchman. As the ship's bows were stove 
in, and it was evident that whenever she cleared the iceberg she would go 
down, the longboat was cleared away, and all the provisions and other 
necessaries put into it. The survivors landed on an ice-bound shore, and 
the story of their adventures, discoveries, and subsequent rescue does not 
contain a dull page. Oriana is the heroine throughout, and the late 
captain's nephew of course falls in love with her. When they return to 
civilisation the couple are, of course, married, and they, also of course, live 
happily ever afterwards. All the same, the development of this state ot 
affairs comes naturally enough in the narrative, which is, as we have 
already indicated, full of interest "Eastern Morning News. 

"The interesting story ends in a satisfactory manner." Dundee 

The Prime Minister of Wurtemburg. 


Author of " Ingatherings." 

Crown 8vo. Bound in cloth extra, Ss. 6d. 

" This anonymously- written story is of much power, and presents to us a 
picture of the Government in Wurtemburg a hundred and sixty years ago, 
when the reigning Duke Alexandra, in his indulgence and foolishly fond 
treatment of his Cabinet Minister and Finance Director, the Jew Siece, has 
placed his subjects at the mercy of a crafty and designing man. How his 
object to overthrow the hero of the story, Gustave Lanbek, and his father, 
by forcing him to take an office which would bring him the contempt of 
his friends and the hatred of the people, was ultimately frustrated by the 
encompassing of his own ruin, is a plot which is developed and completed 
in a most dramatic manner. There is, too, a thread of love-making, the 
course of which runs by no means smoothly, deftly introduce'd into the main 
theme of the story, which lightens and relieves the plot. The book is one 
which we have thoroughly enjoyed, and both author and publishers are to 
be complimented upon the production of a volume effectively written and 
attractively printed and bound." Norfolk Chronicle. 

" The book has the great merit of soon interesting the reader. The 
get-up of the book reflects credit upon the publishers." Daily Mail. 

" A pretty story well told." Hull News. 

" Ingatherings." 

Grown 8vo. Elegantly bound in cloth extra, 3s. 6d. 

"This is an exceedingly interesting collection of writings in prose and 
poetry. The book opens with a quaint story descriptive of the manner in 
which a young German nobleman, by his purity and goodness, delivered an 
old baron and his lovely daughter from the power of the evil one. Among 
the other pieces of prose are 'The Voices of Nature,' 'A Dream,' 'A 
Reverie,' each of which proves the author to possess considerable ability. 
Their artistic style is delightfully refreshing. The poems are for the most 
part original, but there are one or two gems from the pens of Goethe, 
Schiller, and other master-minds. The publishers are to be congratulated 
pp the general get-up of the book." Chester C^ttranf, 




Friend, Hilderic 
Bygone Devonshire